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HANS MELZIAN, Ph.D. (Berlin) 

Formerly Lecturer in African Phonetics and 
Linguistics at the School of Oriental 
Studies, University of London 






The work entailed in the collection of material for this Dictionary was 
carried out under a scheme of research into African linguistics in- 
augurated when the Rockefeller Foundation made a benefaction to 
the School of Oriental Studies, University of London, in 1932. To 
the Rockefeller Foundation and to the Governing Body of the School 
I wish to tender my sincere thanks for the opportunity of carrying 
out this research work in the field and for the grant set aside for its 
publication. A grant for a second tour in Nigeria to continue work on 
the Bini language, given by the International Institute of African 
Languages and Cultures in the autumn of 1935, enabled me to revise 
the first proofs of the Dictionary with my main informant : I wish to 
express my thanks to the Institute for this valuable opportunity of 
verifying the work done in the first tour. 

In Nigeria I received assistance in many directions, and although it 
is impossible to name all who helped me, I am glad to make grateful 
acknowledgement for this assistance here. Special thanks are due to 
the Government of Nigeria and to the Education Department in 
particular for accommodation and transport and for the general 
arrangements of my tours; and to the following people for particular 
services in connection with this Dictionary : 

R. F. G. Adams, Esq., Education Department, for a copy of 
Mr Butcher's Bini Dictionary in the new script. 

H. L. M. Butcher, Esq., The Secretariat, Southern Provinces, Nigeria, 
for the copy of his Bini Dictionary and permission to use it. 

W. A. Fairbairn, Esq., Forestry Department (author of Common 
Birds of West Africa) for the Bini names of birds with their correct 
English equivalents and for some of the names of animals. 

Dr W. Hunter, M.O. Benin City, who went through the Bini names 
of diseases and identified them. 

Rev. W. J. Payne, C.M.S. Benin, who introduced me to my two 
informants Edegbe and Egharevba. 

R. Macrae Simpson, Esq., M.B.E., for valuable suggestions about the 
social structure and political organisation of the State of Benin. He 
also allowed me to see a copy of his draft report on these subjects. 

R. A. Sykes, Esq., Forestry Department, for the Bini and Latin 
names of trees (F.D. Lists). 

My African informants are named and described in the Introduction 
(p. viii, ix) and I should like to express my thanks to them here. 


For help in the preparation of the Dictionary, I wish to thank 
Professor Lloyd James, who has gone through the items and advised 
on general arrangement, Dr I. C. Ward and Miss B. Honikman who 
have read the proofs. Dr Ward's independent verification of some of 
my findings in the sound system of the language has been of in- 
estimable value. My thanks are also due to Mr J. R. Firth who has 
had a stimulating influence on the tendency in this dictionary to stress 
the importance of cultural surroundings. Finally I wish to thank my 
wife who has undertaken a considerable amount of work in the pre- 
paration of the MS. and the printers who have carried out a difficult 
task with great skill. 


August 1937. 


Classification, Area, Dialects, Number of Speakers 

The Bini or Edo (Sdo [/]) language, together with the Ishan (Esa [* ]) 
dialect, which is not dealt with in this dictionary, forms the central 
group of the cluster of languages generally known under the same name 
and belonging to the Kwa group of Western Sudan languages. In the 
north of Bini-Ishan, the Kukuruku languages of the same family are 
spoken ; in the south, the Sobo and Isoko languages, also belonging to 
the same group. 

The area of the Bini or Edo language (which will in what follows 
always be understood as excluding Ishan) is almost identical with the 
Benin Division of the Benin Province in Southern Nigeria. Actually, 
not the whole of that division is inhabited by Bini people ; some parts 
near the southern boundary (e.g. Jesse) having a Sobo, and some near 
the eastern boundary (Igbaks), an Ika-Ibo population. Besides these, 
there are interspersed Sobo, Jekri and Ijaw settlements, and a number 
of members of other tribes, such as Yoruba, Ibo, Hausa in Benin 
City, near the boundaries and at trading settlements. Whether there 
are Bini-speaking settlements worth mentioning outside the Division 
is not certain. There seem to be many Bini people at Akure (Ondo 
Province), and possibly there are Bini-speaking villages in the south 
of Ondo Province (Okitipupa Division) . 

The language is on the whole homogeneous, a fact which is due to 
the strong political centralisation of the people round the Dba at Benin 
City. The inhabitants of the village of Dza near the eastern boundary 
of the Division, not far from Igbaks, speak a different dialect which 
is easily understood by other Bini speakers and is considered as Bini. 
These people are said to have come from Dzara 1 on the other side of 
the present boundary (i.e. in the Agbor Division) within recent times, 
and to have adopted the Bini language. At Eho on the Bini-Ishan 
boundary, and in the regions behind the Ossiomo (called Iyek-orhiooo), 
the speech is said to have dialectal peculiarities. 

The number of Bini speakers may amount to about 90-100,000, the 
population of the Division being 110,738 according to the Census of 
193 1, including the non-Bini population. 

1 The Dzara people have a language of their own which the author has not been 
able to study. It is perhaps not identical with the above-mentioned Ika-Ibo. 

Previous Work on the Language 

The language group was studied by N. W. Thomas in 1909-10, and 
the results of this study were published in his Report on the Edo speaking 
Peoples, vol. 1, in 1911. The Bini language itself is represented by a 
collection of texts, some phonetic and grammatical notes, and a Bini- 
English vocabulary (quoted as N.W.Th.). 

The manuscript of another Bini vocabulary which, as I was informed, 
had been compiled by the Roman Catholic Mission at Benin City, 
was unfortunately not available. 

A third Bini dictionary (Bini-English and English-Bini) is the one 
compiled (issued in 1932 in typescript) by H. L. M. Butcher, M.A., 
who has for a long time been an administrative officer in the Benin 
Division. This last dictionary is in many respects a great advance on 
the other. It does not contain as many words as the one first mentioned, 
but those given appear in a more suitable form, for N. W. Thomas very 
often gave short, unseparated sentences as items in his dictionary. 
Butcher's dictionary gives separate words, e.g. verbs, instead of groups 
containing pronoun + verb + object. He was also able to use the ortho- 
graphy which, in the interval, had been decided upon by the Church 
Missionary Society for their publications, while Thomas was virtually 
facing an unwritten language. Another new and important feature of 
Butcher's dictionary is the tone-marking found in every heading. 

Informants. Scope and Sources of the Information Collected 

The word-material presented here is to a great extent based on the 
two dictionaries above mentioned. The bulk of it was collected with the 
help of Mr H. G. Amadasu of Benin City, mostly during the period from 
November 1933 to July 1934. To the contents of the dictionaries, other 
words were added as they occurred in texts, 1 sentences, proverbs, 
songs, etc. Words that cannot be readily understood without some 
knowledge of the cultural context in which they are used have been 
explained by means of short descriptions, and in other items notes have 
been added, indicating certain associations which those words would 
evoke in a Bini speaker but not in a European student of the language. 
Illustrative sentences have been incorporated wherever possible, but a 
collection of proverbs and sayings intended for the dictionary has been 
omitted in order not to increase its volume unduly. 

Most of these notes and descriptions were also supplied by Mr Amadasu, 
but other information, especially concerning institutions at the 8guae, 

1 " A. Biogr." This abbreviation refers to a text containing a biography of the 
first informant; "Oxwahe Songs", to songs used in the cult of the god Dxwahs 

[ J J , also obtained from the first informant ; Uke keue arhuaro, to a text supplied 
by J. U. Egharevba. 

• • • 


as well as new items, was obtained from Mr J. U. Egharevba, the author 
of a short history of Benin in the vernacular, 1 and some items, from 
Mr J. E. Edegbe, translator and interpreter of the Church Missionary 
Society at Benin City. During my second stay in Nigeria, I worked 
through the first proofs of this Dictionary with Mr Amadasu and 
Mr S. Obayuwana. 

Some words have been taken from publications of the Church 
Missionary Society, mainly from the Communion Service (quoted as 
Akugbe) and the Gospel of St Mark. 

A certain number of important names have been included, and these 
as well as titles, praise-names, etc. have been written with a capital so 
as to stand out more clearly. Names composed of other words contained 
in the dictionary have not been entered under their respective headings 
but are given as separate items, e.g. It>i w eze (cf. ooi " child"). 

The collection of words contained in this dictionary is by no means 
exhaustive. Gaps will be found especially among the following groups: 

1. Nouns of action of the type u + verbal stem + oe, e.g. ukous 

" planting", which apparently can be formed from every verb but do 
not seem always to be in use. 

2. Composite nouns consisting of prefix (a- denoting noun-agents, 
i- nouns of action, u- things, often tools, etc.) -{-verbal stem + object, with 
all syllables on low tones irrespective of their original tones, e.g. omaxe 
[...] "potter", from ma [*] and axe [/]; iterha [_ J " tree-felling", 

from to ['] and erha [/]; ugbiname [ ] "umbrella", from gbina 

[/] and ams [ t J . They seem to be formed very freely though probably 
certain combinations are not in use. 

3. Nouns derived from more than one verb, e.g. iyayi [/*] "faith", 
from ya [*] and yi [']. 

All these formations have been entered as far as they have come to 
the author's notice, and it is hoped that students of the language will 
find no difficulty in determining the meaning of new words of these 
types by tracing their constituent elements. The same method is 
advised in the case of verbal combinations which are not found in the 

Etymological references, indicated by cf., are intended to elucidate 
the derivation and composition of words as well as the sources of loan- 
words. For the tones of loan-words the following works have been 
consulted — Ibo: Dr I. C. Ward, Introduction to the Ibo Language, and 
R. F. G. Adams, A Modern Ibo Grammar. Hausa: G. P. Bargery, 

1 Ekherhe Vbe Ebe Itan Edo, 2nd edition, C. M. S., Benin City, 1934, quoted as 
Egh. Hist. Also in English as A Short History of Benin, by J. U. Egharevba, 1936, 
Church Missionary Society Bookshop, Lagos. 

Recently, a short Bini-Yoruba -English vocabulary has been published by the 
same author, but since I obtained a copy of it only when this dictionary was in 
the press, I have not included any words from it here. 


Hausa-English 'Dictionary and English-Hausa Vocabulary. In the case 
of Yoruba and Jekri, the tones are based on notes made by the author 
in London and Nigeria. References to other dialects or languages of 
the same group are not included, since no comparative study of the 
group is intended here. 

Word groups composed of verb + object in which the vowel of the 
verbal stem is elided or contracted have been sparingly introduced as 
separate items. (But none of the verb-h object-groups the first element 
of which is gbe i ['], ya i ['], ze i ['].) In these as well, the sign cf. is 
used in order to indicate the heading under which the word-group is 

Words preceded by v. refer to synonyms, to expressions covered by 
the same general idea, or to generic terms covering the item to which 
the reference is attached. 

Both kinds of references, those indicated by cf. and those marked v., 
are usually found at the end of each item if they concern the item as 
a whole. Words that have appeared in the item already (i.e. in de- 
scriptions, etc.) are not repeated as references. 

Furthermore, occasional reference is made to figures contained in 
Ling Roth, Great Benin (quoted as L.R.) and Read and Dalton, A ntiquities 
from the City of Benin (quoted as R.D.). 

Note on Bini Sounds and Orthography 

The orthography of the Bini words in this dictionary is not the one 
used in Bini publications at present, but follows the lines indicated in 
the Memorandum on a Practical Orthography for African Languages 
published by the International Institute of African Languages and 

The Bini language has seven vowels: i, e, s, a, d, o, u; a is a forward 
variety; e and o rather close. Instead of z and d, 9 and 9 are at present 
used in Bini books, in which, generally, the tradition of Yoruba writing 
is followed. 

With the exception of e and o, the vowels also occur nasalised, as the 
result of assimilation with preceding nasals, and also as separate 
phonemes. When a nasalised vowel in the context is elided in front of 
an e or o, only a nasalised glide shows its previous existence, the middle 
and end of the e or o vowel remain unnasalised, at least in slow speech. 
(In quick speech, e and o are possibly nasalised throughout in such 
cases.) Nasalisation is marked with a tilde (~) above the letter repre- 
senting the vowel. In Bini books it is at present marked by an n 
following the. vowel, as in Yoruba. 

Nasalised vowels are, however, left unmarked when they follow the 
nasal consonants, i.e. m, o, n, f, ny, nw, as their nasalisation is the 
result of assimilation. 


The use of the nasalisation-mark has also been strictly limited in the 
case of nasalised vowels preceding o. Not every vowel preceding 6 is 
nasalised : in the following cases they have little or no nasalisation — 

(1) in nominal prefixes, such as u-Ce "salt", o-oa [ "man"; 

(2) conjunctive pronouns, e.g. i-Cs [J] "I have"; (3) originally un- 
nasalised verbal stems in nouns of action of the type prefix u-h stem 
+ *3e, e.g. ukDus [/\] "act of planting". In all other cases, vowels 
preceding (3 within the same word are nasalised. As (3 is rather frequent 
in the nominal and verbal suffix -us (assimilated -t5a, -oi, -(3d, -mi), the 
omission of the tilde (~) goes a long way towards simplifying the appear- 
ance of the written word, and it should not be difficult to remember in 
which words the vowel is nasalised if the above rule is kept in mind. 

It is, however, necessary to mark nasalisation in originally nasalised 
vowels of verbal stems occurring in nouns of action of the type prefix u 
+jtem + v£, e.g. ukooe .] "foolishness". (This word is derived from 
ko [ ] "to be foolish", while the above-mentioned ukoue is derived 
from ko [*] "to plant".) 

The following diphthongs occur in Bini: ia, ie, ie, io, io, ua, ue, ue, 
uo, uo, ae, oe, oi, and the nasalised ones ia, is, i5, ua, ue, uo, ae, de, 01. 

The triphthongs in Bini are iae, ioe, ioi, uae, use, uoe, uoi ; and the 
nasalised ones iae, iog, uas, uds. Here, also, nasalisation is not marked 
after nasals. 

Initial i and u are often semi-vowels, especially in other than very 
slow speech; final e, e, i are usually very short; in triphthongs the 
middle part is usually the most prominent. 


The plosives p, t, k (slightly aspirated) and b, d, g need no comment, 
nor do the labio-dental fricatives f and v. 

v is a voiced bilabial fricative (written vb in literature already 

i) is a nasalised bilabial fricative. It is a separate nasal phoneme, 
distinct from v and m (mw in literature already published) . 

s and z are sometimes heard palatalised, e.g. in the speech of J. U. 
Egharevba. s and z are substituted for Yoruba f and j, and English 
ch, sh and j in loan-words. There is evidence, however, that the more 
advanced section of the community do pronounce English ch and j in 
modern importations. The affricates j (dy) and d3 occur, however, in 
onomatopoeic words. 

There are two 1-phonemes, one being the English "clear" 1, and the 
other a flapped variety, 1, which is a sound intermediate between r and 1; 
this has not been distinguished from r in existing publications, though 
some Bini speakers are conscious of this inadequacy. 


There is also a flapped nasalised 1 (or flapped n), written £ here. 
It is written r + nasalised vowel (i.e. r + vowel -f n in existing orthography) . 
r is trilled between vowels; fricative at the beginning of a word, 
rh is a voiceless fricative or voiceless trilled r. 
n is post-alveolar. 

ny palatal, y seems to occur as a variant. 

nw a velar nasal with lip-rounding, w seems to occur as a variant ; the 
velar nasal rj is found in onomatopoeic words only. 

ny has been written y + vowel + n, and nw, w-f vowel + n, following 
Yoruba tradition. More recently, ny and nw have been adopted, but 
without omission of the final n. 

x and y are respectively the voiceless and the voiced velar fricatives. 
In publications they have been written kh and gh. 

kp and gb are labio- velars, i.e. sounds requiring a double closure — that 
of the lips and of the back of the tongue against the soft palate, with 
a simultaneous release of these stops. Dr I. C. Ward, who examined 
the pronunciation of a Bini (J. E. Edegbe), and the author were of the 
opinion that these sounds gave no impression of being implosive, but 
had no experimental means of verifying this point. 

w is a semi- vowel. 

y is a voiced palatal fricative. 

(Palatal and velar semi-vowels are often used in diphthongs and 
triphthongs, see above.) 
h needs no comment. 

Length, Stress and Tones 

Length is very rarely indicated in this dictionary; it is marked only 
in the case of vowels, where it is shown by doubling the vowel symbol. 
There are many pairs of verbs differentiated by a combination of vowel- 
length and intonation, one type having a shorter vowel and a high 
tone in the imperfect form, the other, a longer vowel and a rising tone, 
e.g. ma ['] "to fit", ma [J] "to be good". In these cases the difference 
in length has not been indicated wherever the distinction is made clear 
by the tone marks. In an orthography for Bini speakers in which tone- 
marks are not used, it may be advisable to mark the difference in length 

Stress has not been indicated (but v . below). 

Tones and Tone Marking 

The following tones are found in Bini: high, low, mid, rising and 
falling, rising-falling and falling-rising. The system adopted here for 
marking the intonation of Bini words and sentences, which has been 
used by Dr I. C. Ward in her study of intonation, makes use of five 

• • 

xi 1 

levels, shown by dots in a descending scale: ['] high tone, [*], [•], [.] 
ist, 2nd and 3rd mid tones, [J low tone. 

1. High Tone. An essential high tone is not always on the highest 
possible level in connected speech. When it occurs after a low tone, it 
is usually lower than a previous high tone in the same sentence. This 
may be shown graphically thus ["/]. After another low tone, a further 
lowering takes place ['.*.•], and so on. These lowered variants of the 
' ' high 1 ' tone are not indicated in this book as they are brought about 
by assimilation to the preceding low tone, and therefore have no 
semantic or grammatical function of their own which would make it 
essential to distinguish them from other high tones. They will accordingly 
be represented thus ['.'.'.]• 

2. Low Tone. A low tone is frequently raised before a high tone and 
between high tones. This may be shown graphically thus: [.'], and 
combined with the phenomenon of the "lowered" high tone explained 
in the previous paragraph, thus: [•'.*.•]. Such variants are also the 
result of assimilation and will therefore not be shown here. 

The simplification of tone marking brought about in this way leaves 
the signs for the mid tones free to mark only those tonal phenomena 
that have definite grammatical or syntactic functions. 

In a final position, and in very slow speech also in the middle of a 
sentence, the low tone is generally not level but falling. The fall starts 
below the level of the preceding tone, i.e. after a high tone, it starts at 
a mid-level; after a mid tone, at a lower mid tone. There are, how- 
ever, certain cases in which the low tone is level, and occasionally the 
only distinction between two grammatical forms is made by the occur- 
rence of either the falling or the level variant of a low tone. The rules 
for the appearance of these variants could, however, clearly be ascertained 
with one informant only (S. Obayuwana), and at a time when a general 
notation of the phenomenon in this book was no longer possible (but 
v. the notes under the headings sika [.'], xa 1 [J] and ze 1 [*]). It 
seems to be most frequent in the case of second or third members of 
verbal combinations occurring after a high tone: then, the falling low 
tone is used in the ipf. and the level variant in the pf. The author 
intends to deal with this question more fully in a grammar of this 
language which he hopes to publish at some later period. 

3. Mid Tones. Three levels of mid tones occur: [*-.]; the ist 
following on a high tone, the 2nd following on the ist mid, and the 
3rd on the 2nd mid tone. High tones following any of these mid tones 
are assimilated to them. The interval between high and mid and 
between two mid tones is not sufficiently wide to produce the impression 
of a high-low interval: it may vary between one and three tones. In 
a very few cases it has been necessary to mark mid tone after a low 

• • • 


4- Falling Tone [\]. This tone constitutes a glide from high to low 
made within a single syllable: compare the English word " house' ' 
spoken without any context. 

The mid-falls [\], [>], [ v ], indicate the same fall starting from the 
ist, 2nd or 3rd mid tone. The difference between these mid-falls and 
the falling variant of the low tone is probably one of stress. The mid-falls, 
corresponding to certain semantic or grammatical functions, are marked 
in this book, while the falling variant of the low tone is not (v. above). 
Both high-low and mid-low falls are often very elusive and often can 
only with difficulty be distinguished from high or mid tones. 

5. Rising Tone [J], This tone usually rises from low to mid only 
(v. above, the "lowered" variant of the high tone). In the perfect 
form of verbs with a rising tone the author is not certain whether the 
low start of the rise does not disappear entirely if an object or a verb 
follows; some speakers seem to use a high tone only; in H. G. Amadasu's 
speech, however, there seemed to be a rise, the lower part of which 
was very short: e.g. oxa-re "he said" [/•] or A rise from mid 

to high occurs in the last syllables of one type of questions and has 
been marked in a few cases. 

Rising-falling tones have been marked by \) ], falling-rising tones 

^ vn 

Elision and Contraction 

Elision of vowels has been marked by a hyphen, e.g. kp-akpata [J"] 
(from kpe [/] "to play" and akpata ["*] "harp"), and in difficult 
cases, especially in monosyllables, the full form has been given in brackets 
at the end of the example. Contraction of two vowels of the same quality 
has been marked in the same way, only one vowel being written. 
Nasalisation carried forward as a result of elision or contraction is 
shown by a tilde (~), even when the vowel thus marked follows a 
nasal. Where the group {verb + noun object) is not given as a contracted 
or uncontracted whole with one tonal bracket, but each component 
separately, another object is usually found between the two components, 
e.g. mu ['] ixo [ e J "to let blood", omu o-ixo n-owis [/..V] " ne let my 
blood this morning". The sign w under the line has been used freely 
in order to show that the final vowel of a word and the initial vowel of 
the next one may form one syllable. In such cases, as well as in those 
elisions in which a vowel is left on both sides of the hyphen, each vowel 
has its separate tone-mark in order to facilitate grammatical analysis, 
e.g. in ebi w sba [/*'] instead of [.'*], or ho^ukpo [/J instead of [J,]. 
Only one sign, however, has been written in words formed out of two 
separate elements, e.g. isiame [ _] (si [*]+ams [,.]). 

The vowels given in brackets may, or may not be heard ; they have 


been given tone-marks of their own in noun-headings, but not in 
grammatical elements like (e)t-, (e)u-, etc., nor in sentences. 

The sign * has occasionally been used where a word had to be broken 
up at the end of a line, for purely technical reasons. 

Order and Form of Items 

The letters follow one another in the following order: a, b, d, e, 8, f, 
g, gb, y, h, i, k, kp, 1, m, n, nw, ny, o, o, p, r, rh, t, f , s, t, u, v, (5, w, x, y, z. 

In the case of words differing in tone only, the items with high tones 
are placed first, then those containing both high and low (or mid) tones, 
then the words with low tones only, and last those with rises or falls. 

Unnasalised vowels have no precedence over nasalised ones, except 
where the tones are the same. 

Nouns beginning with e-, i.e. an e- prefix which occurs mostly in a 
context and is often not pronounced when isolated, are found under the 
vowel e, but grammatical elements like (e)n-, (e)t-, etc. are entered 
under the appropriate consonant. 

Entirely different items with the same phonetic and tonal form are 
differentiated by means of numbers. Different meanings that may be 
explained as semantic developments of one word are marked with 
bracketed numbers within the same item. Different meanings brought 
about by the addition of a noun, for example, in the genitive or object- 
relationship are usually not numbered. 

In the case of verbs, the verbal combinations are given before the 
verb-noun combinations. In the verb-noun combinations the two ele- 
ments have been joined where they are followed by an object, or if 
there is no further object, e.g. in gb-ovo [ / ] to be jealous, ogb-ovo t3e [ . . .'] 
she is jealous of me, but the two elements have been kept separate 
when an object is put between them, e.g. in gbe ['] ovo[/] to make 
somebody jealous, oghe v-ovo [../] it makes me jealous. The tones of 
the imperfect forms have been used in the headings and sub-headings, 
but in the case of verbal combinations, each verb has been given its 
independent tone, irrespective of tonal interrelations in actual speech. 
In sentences and other illustrative material, however, the author has 
tried to reproduce the actual intonation of his informant (nearly always 
H. G. Amadasu). 

Inverted commas have been used for the following purposes : 

(1) In single words or short expressions occurring in the English 
equivalent after the heading, they denote that the word or expression 
in question is " coastal English", i.e. either Pidgin-English or a peculiar 
usage of English in the speech of the informant. 

(2) In the translations of sentences, idioms, and explanatory notes, 
inverted commas denote either a literal translation which is not good 
English (and which maybe followed by a free translation), or a quotation. 



A. Amadasu 

Egh. Egharevba (Eyareoa) 

Ed. Edegbe (Sdegbe) 

ipf. imperfect 

pf. perfect 

iter. iterative form 

Yor. Yoruba 

Port. Portuguese 

cf. etymological reference 

v. semantic reference 



ago [ ' ] temporary settlement, e.g. 

for farming purposes, "camp"; 

cf. Yor. ago [./]. 
ays [ J mat for carrying things; 

v. eko [/], oko i [/]. 
akowe ['/] clerk; cf. Yor. akowe 

['./]'> *>• ogbebe [...]. 
Akpolokpolo [...%.] one of the 

Oba's titles; cf. kpob [ '] (?). 
Ama [/] one of the gods at the 

Sguae; v. ugie [..]. 
amahekpol-ikpoleyo ["'..'•>] " the 

rubbish has not yet been swept 

(away) " : early morning, 
asese ["/] a very small bird. 

bi ['] [S] to be bent; cf. go [']. 

de 2 [J] imperfect form of re ['] 

"to come", 
d-ehiaya [\J to become naught. 

ebuluku [ t J loin-cloth. 

Edohe [_'] a chief belonging to 

the Uzama [/J. 
egbala ["'] name of part of the 

ceremony called isiokuo [."%.]. 
eyae [ '] act of dividing; cf. yae 


Eholo N-ere [""%/"] a chief be- 
longing to the Uzama [/J. 

ekabita [,J\] carpenter ; cf. Engl. ; 
v. onwina ['/]. 

elukuluku [ * '] a disease of 

L • • • -J 

chickens; v. ugbadiye [ ]. 

erhio [ / ] eagerness ; cf. orhio [ / ] ; 

v. Ce [J]. 
Esa [\] the Ishan country, 
ewaise [...]; cf. owaise [...]. 
exaxa [/\] sign; v. gbe i [']. 
ezin [ # \] (also ezi) gin; cf. 

ugbizin [_]. 

8k-oha a Bini village on the 

Dha [ ( J River, 
skpeti [\ J box; c/. Yor. akpoti 


ErhuE [. ] an antelope; v. z\u 
fu§ ['] to smear; v. oyara [./]. 

g ie ( £ )re [..] occurs in ne gi£(£)re 

[ \ J the small one. 
gogoogo [ ## J bulging out, of a 

swelling; v. uhueoE J. 

yExueoE [\ J "don't touch me": 
trigger, of a trap; v. uf& ["]. 

Igabap [../] Hausa man, -men; 
cf. Yor. Gambari 

igele [...] (also a-) shot; cf. 
isagele [...J; v. uke [/]. 

iyele ['.J; c/. Eyele [\ J. 

ikparo [*~\ J eye-balls. 

ikpata 2 [ " ' ] sticks used in the 
masquerade-dances of Dvia [/]; 
v. ukeke [.**]. 

ikpokpa [ ## J row of people, per- 
forming an ugie [.J. 

inema [_] act of tying yam- 
branches to poles; cf. na 3 ['], 
ema 2 [ # J. 

ifo [/] name of ugies devoted to 
the Dba's ancestors; cf. of 5 


koko [/] to be big; v. ivie [/]. 
ku£ [J] to set fire (to something) ; 

v. ooi [/]. 
kpokpo [/] to trouble, to worry; 

cf. ukpokpo [...]. 
kpoos [ *] to thank; cf. ekpofe 



n-abe ["\J combined, used of 
positions in the ogwsga [,"%.]- 

odayi [ t / ] young man functioning 
as representative of the senior 
of his sgbee [.%]. 

ogi [ ' ] a certain monkey ; v. ems 

Oguola [ ^/ ] name of the Dba who 
built the wall and ditch of 
Benin City. 

Oguona [ W ] name of a river, also 
known as "Ogwena". 

ogwe [ m J a fallen tree. 

ogbigbi [ 7 ] rumour ; cf. gbigbi [ / ] . 

ogbigbo [*/] a certain plant (tree?). 

OJPTP [...] ]°y> gladness; cf. 

Ofiole ["J a god connected with 

the art of divination, 
osaikpe [.yV] a bird, also called 

muegbsdoo [' * -J]. 

ova [/] praise-name, 
oza [ # J slander; c/. za 

ofo [/] end; in n£(i)oofo [\~\] 
" without end, eternal", usually 

ufoue [AJ; c /- fo [']• 
Ogba. [/] name of a village and 

river near Benin City. 
0bt5 [ * * ' ] a chief belonging to the 

Uzama [.'J. 
oriaemila [....] cow herd; cf 

ria [J], srnila ['/]. 
Oza[\] name of a Bini village not 

far from the Ika-Ibo area; the 

inhabitants speak a particular 

dialect of Bini; v. ukpo [/]. 

r-iwe [ # \] to shed leaves, of 
deciduous trees. 

rhua to wash with charms 

(things only); v. gua 2 [^/], 
kpe [']. 

rhuo ['] to boast. 

saos [/] to splash (kui [J] on. . .). 
si ['] kue [J] to cower; v. ki [/]. 
sislousi ["..] some time ago; cf. 

usl [/], naousi [""']. 
su ['] to lead, to accompany; cf. 

isu [/]. 

s-usa ['J to perform usa [\], the 
secret ceremonies of the cult of 

Udo [/] a Bini village of historical 
importance; said to have been 
the residence of Aruaf a [ "Y ] . 

ugb£ hia [ '*] always, same as 

ugbugbE hia [/*•]• 
ugbiname [...J umbrella; cf. 

gbina 2 [/'], am£ [..]. 
ugboyodo [....] valley, 
uhioue [ # "\] pride; cf. hio [']. 
ukeru [/*] yam-pole, 
ukpogieva [/_] second; also: 

ukpogieha, ukpogienE, etc., with 

the same tones; cf. ozukpogieva 

[ ]. 

i- • • • • • j 

uma n-agwe [/ J badges in the 
form of a cross, worn at agws 
[ # J -time; v. also isixwia [...]. 

unwihitis [/\] smell (pleasant); 
cf nwihi [ ']. 

usi [.J (or '[/]?) fame; v. otiti 


uta [J an object used in the 
ogwsga [ t % J -divination, pos- 
sibly a boar's tooth ; also called 
uk-iha [*"\] "messenger (uko 
[',]) of oracle". 

wua [J] to be taboo; cf. awua 


xue [J]'» ^. mu 1 [']. 

yaya [ '] to disrespect; cf eyaya 




a [*] a short variant of the verb 
rua [ * ] ; also a [ ' ], from f ua [ * ] . 

a [J an indefinite personal pro- 
noun: "one"; it can often be 
translated by the passive : abi-oe 
[,'J] he was born. 

a □ a short variant of the 
possessive pronoun of the 2nd 
pers. sgl. rue [J]. 

aba [/] seeds hung up on a stick 
that is used in ewawa [ -## ] 
divination and when feeding 
witches ; gives knowledge of the 
secrets of witchcraft. 

aba [* J an old word for the anklet 
worn by the emada [...]; now 
called efofo [\ J; its noise was 
given as dyeysndysyen [ ]. 

aba [ ' J (i) originally : native hand- 
cuff ; prisoners were fastened by 
means of aba to large blocks of 
wood. (2) nowadays: a witch- 
doctor's implement, used to press 
a medicine against the ground 
while a prayer is said which 
ends: obo n-or-aba eru w et5i 

"a hand that is in 
aba cannot do anything". This 
constitutes a protective spell. 

ababe [/J witchcraft, as a prac- 
tice, used for purposes of de- 
fence or revenge, or out of 
jealousy or envy; abab-oua na 
w-egbe gbe [/V/*v] "the 
witchcraft of this man is very 

abab [/J rum; alcohol; v. anyo 


abauute [...'] triangular under- 
cloth; spec, denoting women's 
cloth, but also of general use; 
cf. Yor. ibante [../]• 

abe [/] state of being guilty in a 
lawsuit; ode y-abe [//] "he fell 
into guilt": he has been found 
guilty at last (seems to imply 
"wrongfully"); v. re [']. 

abe ["] razor; cf. Yor. abe [••]. 

abekpe [ ## J a knife used to kill 

abiba [/J edge of mud-couch; 
otota y-abiba [///J he sat on 
the edge of the couch; cf. iba 


Abigege [ . ] a praise-name of the 
war-chief Edogu [.*']; also 8bi 
n-uroyo ['/.J. 

[. ] ( I ) branch, in ab-erha 
[/•] branch (of tree). (2) rank, 
social position, in ab-okpa oye 
[/*/] he is equal in rank (to 
somebody else); ab-okpa if a 

y e [. * . ] tne Y are of the same 
rank. (3) straightforward deal- 
ing, unaided by hidden sup- 
port; "ordinary hand", in abo- 
ka [/J; n-uru na iyif-aboka 
[// \\] what you are doing now 
is not "straightforward", i.e. 
you are acting under the in- 
fluence of alcohol, or with the 
help of charms or witchcraft, or 
of some other hidden support; 
oru(ee) aboka [.*/.] he did it 
unaided by money, or free 
from any magic support. 


abokpo i ["J (i) "woof" made 
of wood, ' used in weaving ; 
strikes the threads down in 
order to fasten them. (2) a stick 
held by women at a burial or 
second burial, representing a 
matchet ; it is supposed to keep 
evil spirits away from the 
deceased's children. 

abokpo 2 ['*.] a tree, Diospyros 
crassiflora, used in building 
houses and also (by the Jskri 
and Ijo people) for paddles 
(abokpo 1 is not made from 

abutete [.'..] (high) edge of a road ; 

v. aze [.']. 

ada ["] state-sword, worn by the 
Dba, some big chiefs, and the 
priests of Osa [..] and Oxwahs 
[ J.Y, of. Yor. ada [./]. 

ada [/] family-representatives at 

a burial. 

ada [..] junction; crossroads. 

Adabi" '[.).] a deity supposed to 
stand on the boundary between 
the world and sfioi [.'.], on 
Ad-agb-ad-sfim [.'.'•.]: there 
the dead people rest awhile. An 
Adabi is also made and wor- 
shipped by the priestesses of 

Oloka ["•]; cf ada [..]. 

adeke [ . ] female of osels [.](?); 
it carries many eggs ; looks like 
the male ogoro [..'], but has 
shining stripes; cf eks [."%]. 

adese [ * ] (1) middle; ades-ot- 

oye ['X'] {t is in the middle 
(of it) ; ades-uhuou [.*.'.] crown 

of head. (2) adess n-eva 
[ / J " the middle of two" : be- 
tween ; ysl-adess n-ev-if a (la [ ]) 
[• *• ] don't pass between 
them!' (3) adess n-eva: "in 
two"; na w e 1-adese n-eva 
[' ;j cut it in two! 

ads [ ' * ] a pointed stick for picking 

fruit off trees, 
ade ['.] buyer; cf de [']. 
ads [ ] placenta, 
adiy s' [*/] fowl ; a Yoruba word 

more used than oxoxo [.'.] at 

present; cf Yor. adie [•.•]• 
adows [."%.] a man who walks on 

tip-toe on account of sore feet. 
Adolo [ ' ' ] name of an Oba, father 

of Dba Ovofaos [/..]; his altar 

is shown on L.R. fig. 84. 
adolobie [./*] rebirth, being born 

again (Akugbe); cf dolo [/], bie 


adoloko [*".] sword ; sabre ; cf Jekn 
udoloko [' J. 

ana [ '] (1) chisel; yegi-afia fia 
i3-obo [*..*..*] don't let the chisel 
cut my' hand! (2) an insect 
affecting the yam-creepers; cf 
na [']. 

afiagbe [ ' * ] (Christian) blessing 

(Akugbe) ; cf fi£ [ * ] . 
afiala flag. 

afiama [ ..] pulse; afiama fia v>s 

teitei L../"] m Y heart . is 
beating (with fear) ; cf fia [']. 
afiano(5a ["*'.] imitation coral 
beads; original meaning is "one 
does not cut for somebody", 
but the reason for this name is 

not clear, 
afierha [...] "wood-cutting": 


af orho [ ' ] a game in which some- 
thing," preferably something ed- 
ible, is thrown on the ground, 
whereupon everybody tries to 
seize as much of it as he can. 

afo [ "] a purification medicine 
and soup said to be composed 
of 43 different herbs ; 

v. ebe [/]. 
aga["] a chair (with rest) ; ag-ika 
["J cane-chair ; cf Yor. aga [ , • ] . 

aga [..] barren woman; cf. Yor. 
aga [..]• 

agadaga [ # /J a bandy-legged 

agalezi [_/] young lizard (idio- 
matic) . 

agaOisoso [//*] whitlow; said to 
be brought about by isue ['\J. 

agie [/] corrosive acid; an old 
medicine to cure leprosy; a 
curse: agi-5gi£ fue mudia 
L'\^.~\] may acid burn you 
standing! (i.e. alive; used by big 
chiefs); cf gie [/]. 

agieye [/J small change; oko, 
agieye gu-e ra, imami-en-ofi- 
dola na ms [.W J .'] 
"friend, have you any small 
change, there is (I have) nobody 
who (can) change (na [']) a 
florin for me". 

agobo [/J left hand, left side, 
mostly used with the latter 

agukisiuiogie [./.'J "the star 
claiming rule from (with) the 
moon" : a very bright star, pro 
bably the morning or evening 
star; cf gu ['], uki [ # J, siui 

L'L °g ie [.J- 

agwe [..] a fast kept at the 
£guae [_] and by some big 
chiefs outside it : the participants 
must not eat new yam for seven 
days ; on the seventh day nobody 
is allowed to see the Dba, and 
gun-firing as well as drumming 
is forbidden. After the seventh 
day the new yam feast is held. 
Before the fast begins, each of 
the participants (apparently men 
only) has to obtain a badge in 
cross-form (uma n-agws [.'..]) 
from the priest of Osa [ # J; this 
is worn round the neck, but 
"big" chiefs tie it to the edge of 

their waist-cloth by means of 
small strings of fine coral-beads. 
At the actual feast, the new yam 
must not be touched nor must 
the pots and plates used at the 
feast be used for other purposes. 
The fast is said to have been 
instituted by the Dba Ssigie 
[**J. Three months later there 
is another fast called agws 
oysne [/•/]; cf awe [.J. 

agba ["] a tree, Gossweileroden- 
dron balsamiferum; used in 
building doors. 

agba [/] a long wooden tray with 
cane sides, for carrying loads; 
used by men only. 

agba i [..] plain space at village- 
entrance (uye ["J), behind the 
outer gate; on it stands the 
egbo [" J -fence; it is also called 
agba^uye [ # "J and possibly in 
other cases agbagba [/*]; cf 
agba 2 [..](?), gbaa [.].' 

agba 2 [ t J stool, used by the Oba 
and chiefs; a small square, 
carved seat, like a table, with 
four legs, without a backrest; 
mu^agba gi-ogie n-oya tota 
rW.Vl bring a stool for the 
ruler to sit on! cf agba i [..](?). 

agbada [ <# J a kind of knife with 
two-edged blade. 

agbadi [ ># J bridge. 

agbae [ # J layer, in building a 
well, each one of a man's 

agbaguda [ " * . ] (i) women's cheek 
marks. (2) a knife used for 
cleaning cooked yam, etc. 

Agbaye [/ J a title used in ad- 
dressing the Dba. 

agbaka [/J crocodile; agbaka 

yamu^eoi, sfa [/ \/\] if a 

crocodile catches something, it 
does not give it up. 



agbakpa [.'.] bald man; a nick- 
name: agbakpa n-iloro [/.'.*] a 
bald man who has a shining 

agbaoe [...] chin, lower jaw; 
agbao-ofg ye gogoogo (or goofo 

[••]) his chin is 

pointed ; cf. Yor. agbo [..]. 

agbe [\] water-bottle, of Euro- 
pean make, as worn by soldiers. 

agbeginoto [/...] vulva (idio- 
matic, indecent); cf. gbe gin- 

agbekamezi [...'.] elderly people 
(with plural meaning); people 
from ca. 60 years (Egh. Hist.; 
Egh. says o- or e-gbakamezi, 
the e- stressing the plurality), 
exaeoe n-ogbekamezi hia v-eoa 
(v5 [*]) [../.:;•>] elderly 
chiefs were therein full strength. 
(Here the word is used as a 
verb gb-ekamezi.) Probably of 
Yoruba origin; cf. Yor. meji 


agberhie [.'.] shooting contest, 
like ate "[■*]; hi agberhie, an 
arrow is lost to the opponent 
every time one misses the mark. 

agbeva [...] double; cf. gba ['], 
eva [.']; v. osisi ['"]. 

agb§ ["] (1) ripples on house- 
walls ; only chiefs are allowed to 
have them. (2) a pattern. (3) a 
kind of chisel for carving patterns 
in coco-nuts or planks ; it has a 
narrower blade than aya [/]. 

agbete [/J a man suffering from 
a sore; cf. gbe ['], £te [.J. 

agbo [/] a Yoruba herb-tea, used 
as purgative medicine; cf. Yor. 

agbo [..] ram; agbo n-iyoyo 

[ . . J ' ' bearded ram ' ' , a praise- 
name* for the ram; cf. Yor. 
agbo [..]. 

agbori [ ' ] razor ; a little bigger 
than abe ["]; cf. Yor. agbori 

agbo [..] (1) in: agb-soo [/%.] 

district (an old word) ; ilu^agb- 
eoo we gbaro ye? ['"\.J J] 
how many districts are you 
looking after? (2) world, esp. 
in contrast to sfrti [.'.]; st" 
agbo na [).).] not in this 
world ! (for something that cer- 
tainly will not happen). 

agbuxoxo [....] hornet; a curse: 

agbuxoxo oragb-ue [ 'J] 

may a hornet sting you ! 

aya [.'] a native chisel fixed on a 
hooked stick, used by wood- 

aya n-okpe ['/.] a tree, Mimusops 
djave; cf. o'kpe [..] (?). 

ayako [ # / ] a tree, Xylopia villosa ; 
its hard wood is used for cross- 
planks in ceiling; ayako^szE 
[./..] Isolona campanulata, not 
known to be a separate kind by 
the informant. 

Ayehi [/.] a title used in ad- 
dressing the Dba. 

ayik-odio [.'.'] elders' extra share 
of a payment made to the 
village, or of a killed animal. 

ayoyo [').] shadow. 

aha [ *] a worm, possibly a leech. 

ahaoanakpa [. /. .] "conception by 
foetus", i.e. without cause: in- 
flammation of breasts ; cf. haoa 
[/], akpa [.']. 

ahi ["] sieve; cf. Yor. ase [•']. 

ahs ['.] a disease: either convul- 
sions, or dysentery, or else 
gonorrhoea (or other affections 
of the penis); used with the 

verb ru [']. 
ahs [.J chrysops-fly . 
ahekpi [...] another name for 

ataikpi' [',.]; v. enye [/]. 


ahia [/] scraper; cf. hia [J], 

ahiaoe [ * \ ] bird ; ahiaoe n-ukioya 
['•/..] (or n-utioya [*..]) a red 
bird the cry of which is said to 
be prophetic; if it cries oya o, 
oya o [/'/•], danger or disaster 
is ahead, if oliguegue, oliguegue 
['V )" ) )\ one's errand will 
be lucky. If it cries persistently 
oya o in front of a man, he will 
return rather than continue his 
way. It is believed to be a 
messenger of the god Oxwahe 
[ m ) J to his worshippers, ahiao- 
°t° [ "\J small brass figure 
of the above carried by chiefs 
when dancing at ugi-Dro [."..] 
(v. ugie [ # J) and continuously 
beaten on the beak ; this is done 
in commemoration of an oc- 
currence during the reign of the 
Oba Ssigie [**.]: when he went 
to war with his brother Aruafa 
[*% J, the ahiaoe n-ukioya cried 
oya o on the road, but the Oba 
killed the bird and did not give 
heed to its cry. After his 
victorious return he instituted 
the custom of the ahiao-Dro. 
ahiao-osa [ " \ . ] " bird of Osa ' ' , 
the African Pied Wagtail (and 
perhaps the Blue-headed Wag- 
tail). Appears during the dry 
season only. 

ahiewoe [ # # J a fly; its larva (?) is 
called ewoe ["%]; cf. hio [J]. 

ahio [ "] urine; ahio-re ba o-ot3a 
n-eoiraro ru [JJ\.,\'] his 
urine is dark like (that of) a man 
who has blackwater fever; cf. 

hio u\ 

aho [ ] a hoe for collecting mud, 
broader than egwe [/]; cf. Engl, 

ahobeku [.//] want of some- 
thing; cf. ho [)]. 

aho£o-o\5a love, kindness 

(Akugbe) ; * 'cf. ho [/], £t3s [..], 

ahua [' J] hawk, 
ahuvs [ _ J general pains in bones 
and joints (e.g. due to yaws); 

aibanuafo [J / J] "one is not 
fully undressed " : undervest. 
(Perhaps -fo [/J.) 

aikioi [ J " one cannot strike " : 
a group of charms protecting 
against assaults, worn mainly 
when travelling, or when a fight 
is ahead; cf. kim [/]. 

aireba ["•] ''one does not eat 
in addition to it": any acute 

aka ["] pain in the side, probably 
due to pneumonia or pleurisy. 

aka [ \ ] grass-snake ; said to have a 
crest on both sides of the head ; 
they are rather long, and spit; 
their bite is said to be not very 
harmful; there are the follow- 
ing varieties: aka n-ebebe 
(ebe [/]) [\Y] green grass- 
snake; aka n-ebiebi ['.**•] dark 
grass-snake; aka n-eoisui (soi 
['.**•] yellow grass-snake ; 
aka n-ugbems (gbe [*]; ems 

[."%]) [".'..] "monkey-killer"- 
aka : a long tree-snake that kills 
monkeys by squeezing them; 
said not to be harmful to 
man. Idiom. : y-o o-aka [''.]" to 
dress like a grass-snake": to 
be fully armed, v. snys [/]. 

aka [/] rack for drying meat, with 
a fire underneath; cf. Yor. 
aka [J]. 

akaba [ mm t ] (i) a bell used in the 
cult of the god Oxwahs [ t ) J , tied 
round the waist during festival ; 
also worn by hunting-dogs, 
round the neck. (2) a dance. 

akahe ["J forked spear; nowa- 
days a fishing spear (pointed 
rod); v. L.R. fig. 68 (attendant 
on the right); cf. Yor. akasi 


akai ["\] strictures (of urethra); 
or possibly also symptoms of 
dysentery; impossibility to uri- 
nate and defaecate; also de- 
scribed as a more serious stage 
of odo ["J. 

akala ['..] grey heron; cf. Yor. 

akala [...]. 

akasa [,/] "corn (maize) -pudding" ; 
cf. Yor. eko [ •]; the corn-husks 
are taken off, then the grains 
are beaten to powder, which is 
baked and wrapped in leaves. 

akata ["J a tree, Rauwolfia 
vomiloria; provides firewood. 

akaoudu [....] a tiny thing ; the odd 
one; ovi akaoudu [ ' ] one 
over, one surpassing a guessed 
number ; term of abuse for small 
people : uye o-ooi w akaoudu 
T * * • 1 "you are like the odd 

L . ••••J J 

one"; v. ise [' J. 

ake [ ' * ] a growth (on the thigh- 
bone); ake obo ["/] a ganglion 
on the hand ; same as era [ " ] . 

akegbe [ # / ] a man who pretends, 
by dress or behaviour, to be of 
a different age or rank. 

akegbe [/'] a bad style of the 
hair-dressing osusu [...]. 

akerekere [ . . ,\. ] a kind of water- 
snail ; at times it retires entirely 
into its shell, closing the entrance 
with a cover, called ekokohie 


Ake [/] a deity; the god of 

Aksgbuda ["",] name of an Oba. 
aksrha [/*] charcoal (idiomatic) 
= ogioCibi ["/]; cf. erha [.'](?). 
Akszua ["\\ name of two Oba's, 

Akezua I, and the present Oba ; 
v. iso [/]. 
aki- ['J months; only used in 
connection with the numerals 
from two to twelve, as in akiava 
['/] 2m.; akia ['J] 3 m.; akians 
['/] 4 m.; akiase ['/] 5 m.; 
akiaha ['/.] 6 m.; akiahip 
['/J 7 m.; akiatsfe ['./] 8 m.; 
akiahifi [\/] 9 m.; akiagbe 
["/] 10 m.; akiawop ['..'] 
11 m.; akiaweva ['/.] J 2 m. ; 
(13 months (native) =ukpo [/], 
a year) . 

ako [*J a tree, Dennettia tripetala; 
its fruit is hot like pepper. 

ako 1 [/] place encircled by 
hunters; cf. ibako [...]. 

ako 2 [ / ] a shrine moved through 
the streets at second burials 
of Oba's, Ihama's ['/] and 
Ezomo's [""] family; corre- 
sponds to ot5 [/] in the case of 

ako 3 [/] a position in the og- 
wega [/J-divination (c.c.c.c.) ; 
of Yor. origin? 

akobs [ <# J iron trap for animals, 
nowadays mostly of European 

Akobie an idol in human 

shape built of mud for the 
children in the women's apart- 
ment, who also offer sacrifice to 
Akobis and dance. Though not 
a "real" god, veneration of it 
may have a favourable effect on 
the increase of children in the 
house. This was explained by 
the fact that the existence of an 
Akobis attracts many children 
into the house, and that "some 
spirit" may follow the children, 
and see that children like the 
house; v. Ekpo [ ]. 

akoribis ['/J a clay figure. 


akota J evening; akota n-sre 
yade [.'..V/l come to-night! 
cf. ota [ ]. 

ak5[.J tooth ; ak-ohs [,^]a tusk 
blown whenever the Dba is ap- 
pearing at a ceremony or in a 
big dance, i.e. whenever he is 
in full dress; v. L.R. fig. 65. 
ak-esi [/Y] "pig's tooth": a 
tree, Hylodendron gabunense, 
used for beams supporting the 
ceiling and for verandah-posts. 
Called akesi because of its 
strong wood. ak-ehis [/*] 
" tooth of pepper": a tree, 
Albizzia sp.; used for roofing 
oxogbo [/']. 

akosa [*"J a tree, Tetrasiemma 


akoso ['"] a thorny creeper, a 
little thicker than a man's 
thumb, Uvaria macrotricha; 
akoso so o-owe [*"'-.] "akoso 
has stung my foot": I have 
been stung by akoso thorns. 

akuerhakuiri [./..] a kind of 
worm or larva that builds its 
house of threads and sticks. 

akugbe [ '•] community, union; 
Akugbe N-ohuafs [/;//.] Holy 
Communion; cf. ku ['] gbe ["]. 

akuifo [/Y] a dark-brown bird 
with soft feathers; edible. 

akums [_ J a tree, Pterocarpus 
soyauxii ; used in building door- 
frames (egbaha ["..]); the tree 
contains camwood, but not a 
very good one; it is not used 
for dyeing purposes; cf. ke 1 ['], 
ume [/]. 

akuobisi [/..] a big tree. 

akuomo [/Y] womb; akuomo fue 
xerhe gbe ['./.''] "your womb 
is very smail" (said to a woman 
who has several times borne very 
small children). 

akwayaya [/..] tree-bear (so 
called from its cry : kwayayayaya 
nwanwanwanwanwa ['.../*...])• 

akwe [ " ] the feather (of an arrow) . 

akpa ["] bald head; cf. gbe 1 
□, agbakpa [.*.]. 

akpa [.'] (1) child in the womb, 
foetus. (2) idiomatically used to 
indicate that there seems to be 
no reason for a man's action, or 
for anything happening, e.g.^ in 
ugu w akpa gie ra "do 
you laugh with an unborn 
child? " : what are you laughing 
at ? (when seeing a man laughing, 
without visible cause) ; cf. ahaoa 

n-akpa [..'..]. 

akpa [..] fool; not as strong an 
expression as ozuo [. ,] ; akpa uxi 
[ '] you are a fool; akpa n- 
oo'ioi [..V.] a fool who does 
things without deliberation. 

akpakomiza [./..] an animal not 
found in Benin nowadays; it 
has the surname: akpakomiza 
n-ogb-ixwexws [./.../'] "a. who 
destroys exwsxwe" because ac- 
cording to tradition it drank 
palm-wine from felled palm- 
trees whenever it could find any, 
and tore the trees with its claws 
in order to obtain more wine. 
In the Dra-language akpakomizs 
means "lion". 

akpakpa [.'*] spider. 

akpakpava street in Benin 

City leading from the Old Fort 
to Ikpoba, also "Ikpoba-Road". 
This street was not inhabited in 
former times, and up to the 
time of the Dba Adolo [*.'] the 
bodies of the deceased (with the 
exception of the chiefs) were 
exposed there. 

akpalakp-erha [.../] West African 
Grey Woodpecker. 


akpalode [ / \ ] leather ' 1 medicine ' ' 
belt, sewn by cobblers, worn as 
a protection against charms put 
on the road and destined to 
cause diseases like elephantiasis 
or leprosy. It also protects the 
wearer from gonorrhoea, pains 
in the waist, and the influences 
of witchcraft intended to cause 

akpano [/.] a tree, Tricalysia; its 
branches are linked to the stem 
by joints; cf. kpano [/]. 

akpata [*"] native harp; akpat- 
ebo ["'•] guitar; cf. Yor. 
akpata [,••]• 

akpauose [ ] tinea. 

akpaws ['\) "if it is said": if; 
akpaws ruE, i^agu^se gbina 

[.'V.'V] if {t were not for 
you, I should have fought him ; 

cf. kpa [•], we [/]. 

akpskps [ ' * ' ] (i) platform built of 
small sticks as substitute for a 
mud-bed, e.g. in a hunting or 
working camp. (2) altar. 

akpsls [ _ J a method of divination 
similar to that known as ewawa 
[ J ; but in akpsls a flat wooden 
plate is used instead of a drum, 
and the images are taken in the 
hand, not in a cup; v. iha [_], 
obo [/].. 

akpolu [ / J beads worn by women 
round the waist. 

akpoko ["'] smallest size of 
pepper; hottest sort; supposed 
to spring up from the excre- 
ments of the asess ['/] bird. 

alagbods [/ ## ] ' ' pass cross road ' ' : 
latest child of a woman who, 
at her age, might still have 
other children; also used as a 

alalo [.\.] a skin-disease, rashes 
(looking like patches of powder) ; 

it is supposed to be caused by a 
spider which, when wounded by 
a man, comes at night and licks 
his body; cf. elab [.%.]. 

alama interference with other 
people's work, e.g. by uncalled- 
for help or gossipping; cf. 
igbalama [....];». gbe 1 [']. 

alazi [* V] a big monkey or ape. 

ale^e [./] a dance performed by 
old men, where everyone dances 
as he likes ; it is considered to be 
very funny. 

alemeze [,,%.] a dark-blue bird 
with long plumage, grey head ; 

Cf. £Z8 [J. 

atefe [ *"] or [ J'] an escape; cf. 

alsks a creeper that has a 

tendency to coil, 
alels [ ' * ' ] a creeper that can grow 

very long, mostly used to tie yam. 
alsus [_J a night bird, the 

Standard-wing Nightjar; it 

moves only a short way when 

stirred up. 
alimioyo [*/*] smooth lizard, 

= uriyo ['/]; cf. mioyo [/]. 
alimoi [ t (1) orange, in alimo(i) 

n-exwa [./*.] orange. (2) lemon, 

in alimo(i) ne giers [..**..] 

lemon; cf. Port, limoes. 
alubarha onion; cf. Hausa 

albasa; Yor. alubosa [../.]. 
alumagazi [.//] scissors; cf. 

Hausa almakaji; Yor. alumogaji 


am am am [\\\] describes the cry 
of monkeys (except that of ogi 
[/]); otu am am am [ # '\\\] it is 

ama [*J (1) sign, mark (e.g. in- 
dicating property); ama n-or- 
inya na luyas [*..'*.'.] the mark 
which is on this yam is different. 
(2) omen; ama fia ve re ['.."] 

"an omen is biting me": an amenyanya [../] distant flashing 

omen shows itself to me (e.g. of lightning. This is possibly a 

buzzing ears for good or bad sentence: ' 'water is yawning' 

news ; a headache for bad news) . amiooaos [ . ' V . ] adultery ; of . 

(3) symptom; am-uhuuova fia mis ['], ofla [."%], ai3e [..]. 

(5e re [""".."*] "a symptom of amoko [*..] hammock; used be- 

sickness is biting me". (4) brass- fore the arrival of the English 

figure or plaque as a souvenir for carrying chiefs who were 

of somebody; osa-e y-ama travelling in the Dba's service; 

[//'.] he cast him in brass as amok-en-of-orhio [* Y V] "ham- 

a souvenir. (5) an oracle used mock of the fainted " : stretcher, 

to discover a name for a new Probably through the Port. 

Oba (at Use [. .]). (6) an oracle amuegberioto [/*■.] "going to the 

used to discover hidden things ground with oneself": humble- 

and secret murder: a special ness (Akugbe). 

charm called uxuou n-aya-mu w amufi [ -# J a band of villagers 

ama [. "'.] is carried by its performing a certain ceremony 

owner on the palm of his hand ; at the ugie [..] called isiokuo 

it leads him to the spot where [.*%.]: they climb a high tree at 

the corpse is hidden, or to the Benin City (the oxa ["] tree 

criminal. (7) wound, in yi ama beside the present Education 

[ * * ] y i [ • ] . Office) with the help of ropes ; on 

ams'[ ] water; ams bi top they fasten themselves to 
"water is dark" : clouds have the stem but so as to be able to 
gathered, rain is coming; ams swing freely round it with spread 
n-orho (rho [)]) [..J] rain; arms and legs; wearing rattles 
ams wewe /] drizzling rain; and bells, they thus swing 
ams rijmis '["..."] "water eats round, making fluttering move- 
pepper^ : it ' drizzles a little ments with their arms. In this 
(still lesser degree than in the way they imitate bats or birds, 
preceding case); am-eve [/•] and their performance is meant 
"water of weeping": tears; to represent a war against the 
am-enws[/\]" water of breast": sky (v. isiokuo [."%.]). The 
mothers milk; also denoting dancers have the avamu as 
a disease of the eye; amsigbarp their taboo, and they use a 
[ ) % ] " water does not beat charm believed to enable them 
face": face-cap; of. gbe 1 [*], to fly if the rope breaks; 
ar/> [ ]. avamu is used in this charm. 

ameme "["..] a tree, Fious asperi- anwa [.'] tongs. 

folia; leaves are used as sand- anyaerha [...] "owner of trees, 

paper, hence the idiom: y-eb- or, wood"; a tree, Distemonan- 

amsms kp-sho-a (ya ['] ; kpe ['] ; thus benthamianus. The reason 

rua, a [']) [.'...')] "wash your for this name is not clear; of. 

throat with amsms-leaves" : I nya z [J], erha [."]. 

am not willing to give you what anyeho [ / J a deaf man ; of. 

you want. ny-eho [ ']. 


anyo [.'] alcohol; any-ebo [/'] 
European drinks ; any-ezin 
gi n ; any-oka [/.] maize- 
wine; any-exwexws [/"•]; cf. 
exwsxws [/*]; any-ogo 
raphia-wine (collected by cut- 
ting a furrow along the stem, 
after having removed the top of 
the tree) ; anyo^abalo [/ / J strong 
liquor; rum. 

anyo [ \ ] black rubber, Funtumia 
elastica = araba n-exwi [**/*]. 
Idiom.: ovk oopoorp u-anyo 

[/ ' J he weeps with his tears 

flowing like the rubber-tree, i.e. 
as the latex runs down from the 
rubber- tree. 

apopo [ / ' ] a tree, Lovoa klaineana ; 
used for timber. 

ara [/] a very small worm (cater- 
piliar?), living on leaves; affects 
hunters; very irritating to the 
skin; ara rhie t5s [.*'•] ara has 
attacked me. 

arale ['/.] ( x ) interference with 
other people's talk, etc. (2) 
name of a deity, also called Arale 
n-ebo n-or-iro [ J.'.."] " A. the 
deity who is in the open-place " ; 
it always does things without 
being asked to do them, where- 
upon people must make sacri- 
fices to it; witches report to it 
what they have seen. 

ari- [/] next reincarnation; only 
used with following avehe ['/] 
''other, next". It is not certain 
whether the a- of aoehe does not 
really belong to ari- ; cf. re [ ' ] . 

arioba [/'] (1) reign. (2) king- 
dom. (3) government; cf. re 


ari-okpa [. , J tail feather of a 

ariorho [...]" come in wet season ' 1 : 
any flowing water that dries 

up, or becomes quite shallow, in 
the dry season; cf. re [*], 
orho [..]. 

ariukpa [ # # J " lamp-goer ' ' : night- 
moth; cf. rie [J], ukpa ["]. 

arc [ # J a disease of animals; 
affects goats, sheep, cattle, etc.; 
skin eruptions, like craw-craw. 

arha [_] part of the ceremonies 
at the second burial; takes 
place at night ; a person selected 
by the deceased acts as his 
representative during the night, 
and on the following morning 
it is determined whether the 
sacrifice made to the deceased 
has been accepted; arha pre- 
cedes the institution of a shrine 
for the deceased; v. re 1 [']. 

arherhs ['/] gentle treatment. 

arhi- [*J v. arhuC- [*J. 

arhiokpaegbe [//] "walking and 
standing up 1 ' : resurrection 
(Akugbe) . 

Arhuafa ['"%.], also Aruafa, a war- 
like giant, brother of the Oba 
Ssigie ['*.], said to have lived at 
Udo [/]; carvings and casts of 
the fighting A. show snakes 
coming out of his helmet. 

arhuaro [,"\.] blind man; cf. 
rhu [/], aro [.J. 

arhue [.J circumcision (at no 
definite age); cf. rhus [/]. 

arhuo-, also arhi- [\] man, person 
(in connection with numerals 
only) ; arhuo-okpa, arhi-okpa 
[ ' " ] one man ; arhuo-eva, arhi- 
eva ["/] two men; arhuo-eha, 
arhi-eha [*'.'] three men ; arhuo- 
ene, arhi-ene ["/] four men; 
arhuo-ise [".*], arhi-se ["'] five 
men ; arhuo-eha ["/.], arhi-eha 
[ J six men; arhuo-ihiro 
[*7J, arh-ihifo ["\] seven 
men; arhuo-efefe ['*..'], arhi- 


efgfg '] eight men; 
ihifi [••;/], arh-ihifi [*•;] nine 
men; arhuo-igbe [".*], arh-igbe 
["Y] ten men; arhuo-eso, arhi- 
eso ["/] some people; ilu- 
arhuo-ei5a no [ ,*Y] now many- 
people are they? 

arhuooto ['/.] a viper, bigger than 
ioiekpo [..J; v. snys [/]. 

araba [**J the rubber-tree, Fun- 
tumia elastica ; araba n-exwi 
[••/•]=anyo ['.] "black rub- 
ber"; a^aba n-ofua ["."] 
" white rubber " (plantation rub- 
ber) ; cf. Engl, rubber. 

Aragwa [/*] a chief: he has a 
quarter on the Siluko Road and 
keeps account of the time by 
counting the market-days and 
observing the farming seasons; 
he also knows the date of the 
last fall of rain in any year. He 
keeps some of the rain water in 
a bottle until the following rainy 
season begins. 

araha [" J favourite wife; now- 
adays ao-ebo [7] i s more used; 
a. originally meant the favourite 
wife in the Oba's harem. 

a te [.'] "eating", (i) in are 
m-egbe (ma [/]) [.*..] "may 
eating be good for the body !"; 
answer to a junior's thanks for 
his food. (2) a wasting sickness. 

arebu [/ J a kind of white yam; 
e/.re 1 'n,W [*];v. ema2[. J. 

arekpa [/J an emetic; cf. re 1 ['], 
kpa [*]. 

ateta [ * J a charm used to make 
someone reveal a secret, e.g. in 
the case of wives who do not 
confess adultery; cf. re 1 ['], 
ta [']. 

ariyeya [ ...] swelling in the 

groin; cf iysya. [...]. 
a r° ["] dye; iram-ukpo y-aro 

nexwi [/ 
the cloth 


"*•] I want to dye 
black; cf. Yor. aro 

ato 1 [..] (1) eye; aro n-ofua [./•] 
the white of the eye ; aro n-os- 
oze (sa [']) [..'*•] "eye that is 
cast in lead": cataract; aro^ 
sre sy-sse (ye [J]) he 
does not see well; idiom.: aro 
o-oe gbe (us [J]) [..7*] "eye 

is very broad to him": he is 
very greedy; aro Cs ba [.//] 
"my eye is red": I am angry; 
idiom . : ar-us w iri^oto [./".] 
" your eye does not come down ' ' : 
you are very angry (said when 
trying to pacify somebody who 
is furious), also: you are wor- 
ried; ar-us suku "your 
eye looks afraid": you are shy. 
(2) face; ar-us [ m J] your face! 
(exclamation of surprise when 
meeting an acquaintance after 
a long absence). (3) surface; 
aru w sts [/..] "surface of sore" : 
sore ; aru^omas [.'..] " surface 
of old": scar. (4) kind, sort; 
aru^okpa [ "] the same sort; 
ar-ukpo u-ona xi [.~W'] "sort 
of my cloth is this ' ' : this is of 
the same kind as my cloth. 

a t° 2 [..] (*) hearth; aru^ewu 
[/'•] hearth. (2) shrine of a 
god ; ar-osa [ . \. ] shrine of Osa 
[..]; aru^sfae [/*\] shrine of 
8fae [."%]; i.e. a hunters' Ogu 
[/] at which all their trophies 
are kept; cf. Yor. aaro [_]. 

aroirofiexoeweris [./...] "one 
thinks thought throws mind 
back (return)": repentance 
( Akugbe) . 

arousus [. ,"\ J greed; arousus bu w s 
g^e L\.7-] "greed is much 
for you" : you are very greedy 
of- aro 1 [.J, us [/]. 


arowa [_J superior; master; 
of re ['](?), owa [/]. 

a P e [ J ( I ) a nsn "with a 
moustache"; its meat is good. 
(2) idiom.: same as eb-eoarie 
[//]; cf Yor. aro [..]. 

ape [ # J cripple; with legs bent 
outward; cf. Yor. aro [••]. 

atugbo [_J "farm-doer": far- 
mer (idiomatic); cf. ru ['], 

ugbo ["]• 

afaoe [" ] tongue; idiom.: afaoe 
fue ta gbe ["J'-] "your 
tongue is very long" : you twist 
a man's words in his mouth. 

afaoe [/J (1) animal; afaCe bu 
(or kpo) gbe o-oha na [//..'.] 
there are many animals in this 
bush; afao-oha [//] bush- 
animal; a£au-eze [/.,] river- 
animal; afao-ato [/.~\] animal 
of the grassy plains. (2) meat; 
afa(5-uzo rhierhie gbe [.**..'*] 
antelope-meat is very tasty. 

afeke a snake similar to 

ooiois ['/]; it has a liking for 
eggs; v. snye [.*]. 

apnya [/J a tree, Afzelia (afri- 
cana, bella, and bipidensis). 

asa ["] whip; v. gbe 1 [']. 

asa [/] (1) shield; nowadays a 
small shield carried in front of 
the Dba, lyase ['/] and some 
chiefs (also called esa [/]); v. 
L.R., fig. 108. (2) wing-covert of 
beetle or cricket ; cf. Yor. asa [•,]. 

asaka [/*] a black road-ant which 
smells bad and stings; going in 
groups of 10-12; asaka n-oxi- 
okpa [.'.'...]" single-going ant ' ' : 
another sort of road-ant that 
stings badly. 

asaka [/J soup without meat. 

asaCoto [ 1 black driver ants 

L • • • • J 

moving in large numbers; 
smaller than asaka [/*]. 

ase [/] state of being not guilty; 
iri-ase o-eoe na (re [']) 

I am not guilty in this affair, 
aseza [".] soldier; cf Engl. 


ase ["] (1) spot; yay-ase ni, uyaj 

mi-oe-oa ['/*'.'. ."M &° and loo . k 
at that spot, you will see it 

there ! (2) period, space of time ; 

ase ni onaru^ee ['**'••>] during 

that time he did it. 

ase [.'] (*) command. (2) the 
grant of one's words coming 
true; it is dangerous to utter 
anything detrimental to some- 
body else: Osa may make it 
come true; cf Yor. aje [/]. 

ase [ # # ] saliva. 

asegie ['"*] iron rod for digging 
yams; one side of it is broad 
(some are also pointed). 

asekpe [ ] a white yam ; v. ema 2 


asele [ . ] a cricket. 

asiohu [**.] a poisonous snake 
with a pointed head, longer than 
ouiuie ['/], of the same colour 
as ataikpi [ ># J; v. enye [.']. 

asivi r I "the one with nuts" : a 

L • • • J 

tree, Phyllanthus discoideus ; 
takes its name from the nut- 
like, round knolls in its wood, 
which make it difficult to cut. 

I I is similar to akesi [."%.], though 
not as durable ; the wood is also 
used to make poles supporting 
the ceiling in native houses; 
cf s-ivi [*.]. 

asologu [ / " ] xylophone. 

asoro [***] a spear; cf. Yor. 

ajoro [•"]. 
asoso [*"] fruit of ebieba [/•]; 

very sweet; found at the base 

of the plant. Given in the F.D. 

list as Dioscoreophyllum lobatum. 

Refers perhaps to ebieba. 


as5 [/] night; o-s^-asD [/•] at 

asu [/] a shrub, Randia coriacea; 
its leaves when ground give a 
very durable black dye which is 
used by boys and girls to imi- 
tate the tribal marks. The F.D. 
list gives, besides, an asu nexwi 


asua [/] a harmful charm (sbo 
[.%]), a "pushing-medicine" 
which pushes people into dan- 
ger, lawsuits, and disasters of 
every kind; cf. sua [J], 

asue ["] a shrub, Carpolobia 
lutea ; its wood is used to make the 
akpata ['"], the native harp. 

asukpe [ #> ] forceful swallowing, 
like that of a man who has got 
a morsel of food in the windpipe. 

ata ["] a tree, Canthium glabri- 
florurn; from it, medicine for 
sda [ m J is prepared. 

atayimua [ / ■ J ' 1 what is said and 
cannot be debated": soothsay- 
ing; cf. ta ['], mua [J]. The y- 
is probably the relic of an 

ataikpi [ ] " imitation of boa ' ' : 
a snake, bigger than aka ['J, 
but not so big as ikpi. It has 
a very hard skin; cf. ta ['], 
ikpi [/]; v. enye [/]. 

ataka [ #> ] roll of tobacco; of 
Port, origin? 

atalakpa [ ] leopard; atalakp- 

ixia [/\*\] leopard-man; idio- 
matic: oxd s-atalakpa (ss [']) 
[J 1 he is as bad as a 
leopard. Voracious people, too, 
are compared with leopards. 

atat- in atat-abo ['"'] palm of 

hand; atat-aws [***%.] so * e °* 

atauoi [_] the time preceding 
sunset ; the word was explained 

as being composed of te [J] and 
uoi [/] and meaning something 
like "deceiving the girls", be- 
cause the glow of the sunlight 
was said to deceive people so that 
they stay longer on the farm 
and have to return when it is 
dark. But this etymology seems 

atete [" ) J] a cricket. 

ate [/] "fixed selling' ' (in con- 
trast to iyo [,\|): selling when 
sitting behind one's merchan- 

atsrhu [/J a soft mat made from 
the reed sbo [ ' J ; easy to roll. 

atste [ ## J a round, flat cane tray 
made out of itoto ['/] and 
uxwerh-oha ["."], used by wo- 
men when hawking goods (cf. 

iX [."%])* e -g-> grains in the 
market. The grains are distri- 
buted on it in heaps, e.g. for a 

atiebi [_J "caller of darkness": 
a large insect, perhaps a night- 

atita [/'] meat; an expression 
used when speaking with chil- 
dren; ifi-atita nwue 
I have cut you meat. 

ato [A] g ra ssy plain (as in the 
Kukuruku- or 3wo-country) . 

atorhi [_*] gonorrhoea; a better 
word than okpatale [ ], 
which also refers to a worse 
form of the disease: cf. Yor. 
atosi [,./]. 

atowo [_ J whitlow; finger must 
be cut off; severe form of 
isue [*"%]. 

atugis [ t / ] a small monkey which 
warns a troop of monkeys of the 
approach of any danger. 

ava [/] wooden or iron wedge 
used to split wood. 


ava [/] (i) thunder and lightning; 
ava n-uxuou [ ' ] thunder and 
lightning (lit. "of above"); ava 
de y-erha na [.'*/.] lightning 
struck this tree. (2) thunder- 

ava [ # J daytime; yade ava n-srs 

[V./V] come in the course of 
the day ! 

avam(u) [ # \] or [."%.] an animal 
of the bat family (the biggest 
one) ; it climbs up trees, clasping 
their trunks; supposed to visit 
201 trees during every night; 
cf. Yor. awamo [../](?). 

avis [/] clitoris. 

aoaoegbe [ ] necessity, want; 

cf. oa [/], oe [J, egbe [/]. 
aoe ["] (aua) a particle: (1) pre- 
ceding the demonstrative pro- 
nouns when used as nouns : aoe 
na ["J these people; aoe ni 
["/] those people. (2) oc- 
casionally preceding nouns in 
the plural, probably conveying 
a demonstrative idea : ao-ixuo ni 
hia ["J J'] all those women; 
ao-ets 6s ir-owa [" — > ] my 
brothers are not at home. 
(3) preceding an interrogative 
-a, thereby adding a demon- 
strative and nominal meaning: 
ao-a no [*~Y], ao-aani xi ["/] 
who are those? v. iho [_]. 

aoeto [ ># J "hair-puller": a kind 
of burr that sticks to one's 
clothes and hairs on the legs; 
cf. od ['], eto [/]. 

aoisrs [_J coward; probably 
also lazy person; cf. ois [J]. 

aoiogbs [_J an otu [ # J at the 
£guae [ ]; they announce the 
Oba's orders in the town, ringing 
bells (sgogo ["*]). 

aCe [..] M female, woman, e.g. 
inom-aos [,"\] "female child": 

girl; ao-iy-oba ['""] old ex- 
pression for ibisk-iyoba [./'"]• 
(2) wife; aos os ona xi [..'..'] 
this is my wife; ao-ebo [*/] 
favourite wife ; ao-eb-osa [ Y\ . ] 
"favourite of Osa": woman 
with atresia vaginae; ao-ogie 
[\J "rulers wife": oloi ["]; 
used as address to an oloi by other 
women, but also ao-5ba ["']. 
awa [/] dog. 

awass [/J a charm in the shape 
of a pebble, used to wish people 
evil, or to bless them. 

aws ["] a big purple bird with a 
tuft on its head; cf. Yor. 
agbe [•']. 

aws [ # J fasting, a modern Yoruba 
loan-word; cf. Yor. aaws [ # J 
and cf. agus j [ m J . 

awo [/] another expression, not 
so current, for obobo ['/] 
"cooked yam, ground and at 
times mixed with oil". 

awua [ t# ] taboo; awua w sgbse 
[,"\] family taboo; awua^shi 
[."..] "taboo of guardian spirit ' ' : 
personal taboo existing in 
addition to the above; awua w 
sf it5i [/**.]" taboo of the deity ' ' : 
special taboo affecting priests; 
cf. wua [J]. 

awuekia [/J impotent man; cf. 
wu ['], ekia [' ']. 

axa [ # J weaver-bird; a different 
kind is axa n-onwina [.//] "the 
carpenter weaver-bird" ; it has a 
red collar, and its beautifully 
woven nest is to be found on 
the riverside, with the mouth 
towards the ground, 
axas [ #> ] disobedience, 
axarha [_J fork between legs; 

cf. Yor. akata [ _ J . 
axarho [/J a big monkey; cf. 
Yor. akato [ # - J. 


axase [**J prophet, soothsayer; 

c /- xa se i [*]. 
axe [/] cooking-pot, stronger 

than uwawa [, . .]. 
axiaoa [ ## J eighth innings in ayo 

[*.]game; <?/. xil .["],ofta [."%] (?). 
axis [' J selling; c/. xis [*]. 
axie[_] mourning; oru^axiE [/"J 

he is in mourning ; cf. xis [} ] . 
axiexie [ /] the smallest kind of 

squirrel; lives in hollow trees, 

at the upper end; they are 

hunted by smoking out the trees; 


axioua [ _ J winner in a game ; cf. 
xie ['], o(3a [/\], axiaua [..J. 

axowa [ _ J senior house-servant 
who looks after the house and 
property of his master in his 
absence, and until his heir is 
grown up; cf.xz[J] (?), owa [."]. 

ax5x5 ["'] a fish with stinging 

axua [/] subordinate; of inferior 
rank ; axua^ixi o-uw-if a [.'..'*.] 
I am inferior amongst them. 

axuawa [""•] soot. 

axuaxua [ ' ) )] Pied Crow ; dark 
blue, with a yellow collar round 
the neck. 

axue ["] joint (physiological). 

axue [ *] washing; a greeting: 
axus rtiu-omo [.'...]" may wash- 
ing lift up a child", used to a 
junior woman as reply to her 
family salute in the morning 
when she is leaving the men- 
struation room, i.e. when she 
has finished her washings; cf. 


axwarhaoe [**'.] lips; axwarhau- 
unu ["*/] lips; axwarhau-unu 
egile ['"/".J underneath part 
of snail; a word of abuse: oru w 
axwarhaC-unu doyoro o-oy-egils 
L' '".'...*'..] ^ has a hanging 

lip like that of a snail; a" 
xwarhao-uhe [""/] labia maj ora. 

axwaxuisa [**\.] scarab; idiom.: 
oxuo na yeu-axwaxuisa [.//••>.] 
"this woman is like a scarab", 
i.e. ugly; c/.isa[.J. 

axws ['J to-morrow; axws uyure 
[\Y] to-morrow you shall come ! 

axwse [\] (i) a creeper, the fruit 
of which is used in playing 
marbles; 2 sorts: axu-ebo (ebo 
['*]) [*"*] Klainedoxia gradi- 
folia (brown fruit); axu-ekpu 
["'•] Mucuna flagellipes (black 
fruit) . It is not certain whether 
the Latin terms are here rightly 
distributed. (2) game of marbles 
(also played by adults) ; gi-a fi 
axwse [/"J let's play marbles ! 

axwsxae [ _] a kind of heron 
which likes to bask in the sand ; 
cries piapia. ["]; caught by 
means of an uho [/]; cf. xus 
[J], exae [\]. 

axwsxwe ['/] a tree, the fruits of 
which are used in the opmila 
[/.J -divination; cf. Yor. a- 
kpskpE [-..]. 

Axwiaua [ ~\ ] name of a Bini 

deity (anihE [/%]). 
axwoxwa [ _ J Double-spurred 


a y a [. ] a l ea f» used to prepare 
afo [/] (for the purpose of 
purification) . 

aye ['*] world; occurs e.g. in a 
woman's name Uwaraye, i.e. 
uwa r-aye [..**] "pleasure is in 
the world"; cf. Yor. aye [•']. 

ayere [...] memory; cf. ye 1 [/] 
re [*]. 

a y° [ J W a seed. (2) a game 
played with seven of the above 
seeds which are thrown up into 
the air in increasing numbers 
and must be caught under in- 


creasing difficulties. There are 
eight innings in this game which 
is also played by adults; if a 
man goes through the whole of 
it without a mistake, his op- 
ponent must start once again; 
v. iss n-afi [*./]; omunya [../] 
(7th innings); axiaua [.,.] (8th 
innings); gi-a do fi-ayo [.'•".] 
let's (come and) play ayo! cf. 
Yor. ayo [•,]. 
aza 1 ['.] store-room in the house. 

2 [ ; J long bell always found 
hanging over the image of a god. 

3 [*.] a creeper, Mussaenda 
elegans; chewed by "doctors" 
to enable them to tell the future. 

Azama[/.] a deity (or deities?) of 
the Oba. 

azana [..J boar (bush and do- 
mestic) . 

azs [ # J fee, e.g. for a native doc- 
tor, or somebody looking after a 
woman in childbirth, or even for 
somebody to whom one owes a 
new position. 

azs [,'] (1) witch (eating the souls 
of people); witches are also 
called ifa n-exwa .['/J "the 
big ones", ifa n-ixi-aso ['.../] 
"they who walk at night", ifa 
n-is-oi$a (se [)}) [\'J t ] "they 
who pass a man" (i.e. in 
seniority, rank, power), and ifa 
n-ir-abutete (re [']) ['..'•..] 
"they who are on the edges of 
the road " . (2) a man whose magic 
kills people. (3) people who are 
unforgiving and revengeful ; such 
as try to poison others ; cf. Yor. 
aje [JY> v. oOababe [....]. 

azi ['.] adze (used for smoothing 
wood) (a word used in timber- 
camps). Engl.? 

azimomD [*/.] a tree, P achy stela 
micrantha; its strong, durable 

wood is used for poles sup- 
porting the ceiling of native 
houses, and for making mortars, 
pestles, and hoe-handles. Its 
charcoal is likewise very durable 
and used by smiths. Because of 
these many uses the tree has the 
praise-name erha n-om-iyo (mo 

□) [...*'] " the tree that en " 
genders money". 

azo dinner feast as given out 
of the ordinary routine, in con- 
trast to eyo [/], which means 
either a feast given to helpers 
under the use [/]-system, or 
the yearly family-festival; v. 

kU2 [*]. 

ba i ['] (1) to watch; ba w e ye, 
dey-or-eua "watch (it) 

and see whether he is there!" 
b-egbe [/] to be watchful; ob- 
egbe rhia [,''J] he is watchful 
by character, b-ode [/] to 
watch the road, e.g. in order to 
prevent passers-by from spying 
into secret ceremonies. (2) to 
do something stealthily (v. do 
[J]); oba rhi-£re [//.] he took 
it secretly; oba mu^E [.**\] he 
carried it stealthily. 

ba 2 ["] in ba[*]ku[']: (1) to 
miss; ko-f£-se n-uy£ba w e ku 
[./*••/] aim at it properly that 
you do not miss it ! (2) to com- 
mit a mistake; oni r-usu w et3i 
n-o ba ku ru [ J,\'\'] that is 
among the things he did by 

ba ['] to snatch off. ba [*] rhie 
[J] to snatch somebody or 
something away; ob-6xuo na 
rhie t>-ob-odo-re [//..//.] "he 
snatched the woman away from 
her husband", i.e. he ran away 
with her. Iter, bano [/] rua 


(fua, ua) ['] (a) to strip some- 
body (the iterative is used be- 
cause more than one cloth is the 
object) ; yebano o-ua [\ /*] don't 
strip me ! (used e.g. by a mother 
carrying her child on her back 
when it does not keep quiet and 
plays with her cloth) . (b) to be 
stripped, naked; oooxa na ban- 
ua L/..7] this child is naked; 
cf. ba [/]. 

ba 1 U] (i) to be red, or yellow; 
v - a to [..]• (2) to shine, of the 
moon; v. uki [.,], siefe [.J. 

ba 2 U ] C 1 ) to put something up- 
right, mostly into the ground; 
ba^eye y-ehe na [././J stick 
this yam-pole into the yam- 
heap! orh-iga ba [J J] "he 
took feather put (it) upright": 
he stuck the feather upright 
(into his hair), ba^ema [/J 
to stick yam-poles into the 
heaps; this is done when the 
yam-ropes are about a yard 
long ; when the yam has reached 
the top of the eye [/], ikpesi [_] 
-poles are added, and the yani- 
ropes tied from the eye to the 
ikpesi; v. fi ema ["J. (2) to 
stick a needle, etc. into some- 
body; yeba olode y-oo-egbe 
[ .'.... ~\] "don't stick a needle 
into my body!" (e.g. among 
schoolboys), ba [J] — igba [.J 
"to stick somebody with "a 
thorn": to proclaim a woman 
as a wife of the Oba. ifa 
ba-r-igba ['/•.] they proclaimed 
her as a wife of the Dba; cf. 
baba 1 [/] (iter.). 

>a 3 [J] to be hard, i.e. difficult; 
idiom.: oba o-axe n-ozolua ya 

l-eoi [J\.J\*\] "it is hard 
like the pot which (the Dba) 
Dzalua took to cook oil" (a pot 



which it was very difficult to 
heat, and to cool again): it is 
very hard indeed, e.g. of a piece 
of work, or a severe illness, etc. 
oba kua [/J] it is very hard 
indeed; cf. baba [J J}. 

ba 4 U] to add; used as second 
part of a verbal combination; 
v. rhie [J I de [']; hence, ba-re 
[J,] "added to it", may often 
be translated by " besides", "as 
well", etc. 

ba 5 \J] in ba^eoe [_] ba [J] 
for the sake of; ba^efie n-ode 
er-ugbe oe ba [...*..„ ^] "for 
the sake of yesterday (i.e. for the 
thing which happened yester 
day) you are flogging me". 

ba [J] to give up, stop, doing 
something; to leave alone; ba 
oxia [..'] stop walking! ba rie 
[/] keep away! ba ue [ '] leave 
me alone! cf. ba [']. 

baba 1 [/] to stick or peg poles 
into the ground (plural or 
iterative form of the verb 

baba 2 [/] to grope for the way 
(m the dark) ; obaba yo baba re 
o-ebiebi [./v./-] he is groping 
here and there in the dark ■ v 
bibi [/]. ' ' 

baba [J J] to be hard, i.e. severe 
(also used in the literal sense?); 
inwina ni yizebaba, okele fua 

LJJ'JJ.'/l when that 
work was so hard (ze : for some 
time), he ran away. 

bab 1 [/] to hurt; also in a meta- 
phorical sense ; ete bab Oe [ * ] 
the sore hurts me ; eue n-ota ma 

oe bab oe gbe [ •.] the 

word (matter) he told "me hurt 
(enraged) me very much; cf 
ibalegbe[_J;ba 3 [J](?). 

bab 2 [J to scoop water, with a 

cup or spoon, etc.; bab [. J 
kua [*] to scoop... out of...; 
bal-ame kua o-axe na [.'...*.] 
scoop water out of this pot ! 

basabasa [....] a shrub, Funtumia 
africana; latex is similar to 
rubber and is added to rubber 
to increase its quantity. 

baoa [/] (followed by eoe [..] 
"word") to tell a lie ; obaoa eoe 
gbe [...Jl /'he tells (too) 
many lies (against one)". 

bebe [/] to be naughty, of boys; 
it implies acts like touching 
what must not be touched, 
riding a bicycle on the handle, 
turning something over, etc.; 
idase [."], however, implies 
something skilled, like juggling 
with breakable things and en- 
dangering them in that way. 

b-egbe [/]; cf. ba i [*]. 

be ['] ye [)] to see; ibs y-ere 
[ .) ] I saw it; v. de ['] ye 


k i [j] to tap palm-wine, by 
making incisions with a knife; 
obs ago [..'.] he is tapping 
palm-wine (now); ob-ogo [J .] 
he taps palm-wine : he is a palm- 
wine-tapper; v. so ["]. 

be 2 [)\ to strive after the 
affection of young girls by 
giving them all they want from 
childhood upwards in order to 
marry them at the age of 
puberty. This does not con- 
stitute a betrothal. 

bebsebs [ . . . ] describes a protruding 
abdomen; used with ye [*] or ru 
[']; otu^eko bsbEEbe [.'%.. J 
he has an embonpoint. 

bsle [/] (i) (followed by kua ["]) 
to cut into slices; same as 
giagia [.']; bsl-oysds na kua 

L...J j\ cut tms P lantain mt0 

slices! (2) to wane, of the 

bste [ 1 describes a short and 

very fat man; used with the 

verb ye [']. 
bstebste [,,"] sword ; sabre, 
bstse [••]" very big, of a farm; 

ugb-sre ye betse ['J'"] his 

farm is very big. 
b-Eos [\] to stammer; cf. obzvs 

[_]; v. fu eoe [/'.]. 
bi 1 ['] to be dark; dark blue, 

when followed by dududu [•••] 

or sususu [•••]; cf. ebiebi [/•]. 
bi2[*] (1) to move; bi[']de[^] 

to rush, pour in, of a crowd; v. 

hihia[/] de[/],yiyi[..]. bi f] 
yo ["] bi ['] re [*] to move here 
and there; obi yo bi re [/"*] he 
is moving here and there, bi 
egbe [./] "to move body": 
(a) to walk with swaying body, 
as cows and pigs do (v. Oxwahs- 
songs, 2). (b) to move aside so 
as to let somebody pass ; bi egbe 
n-ugu Ce gbe ra [.,''.' J] "step 
aside that you may let me 
pass!" (2) to push; ysbi os 
[' don't push me! v. bi [J], 
warn [J], bi f] gbef] to shut; 
door, window, box, or any- 
thing that has a lid; v. exu 
[ . . ] • (3) t0 vomit ; cf. Yor. bi 
[j; v. ekpa[/]; cf. ubius [.%.], 
bii [J]. 

bi 1 [J] to stab; to prick with 
some pointed object; ysbii tte 
[\\] don't stab me! said e.g. 
when dancing with an agbada 
[...]. (This sentence differs 
from the one given under bi 2 [ * ] 
"to move" only in the length of 
the vowel i in bii which, there- 
fore, has been doubled here.) 

bi 2 [J] to concern; d-en-obi-o£ 
[ '••] "what does it concern 


me?" i.e. I have nothing to do 
with it. omabi t5e, io-obo o-o 
["V "it does not con- 
cern me, I have no hand in it", 
bi ogu ["•] an expression used in 
the Dxwahe-cult only (after aka J 

ba [ . . . ] -dances) , meaning ' ' quite 
so"; v. ise [/]. 

bia [J] to strip a palm-branch, 
or a banana- or tobacco-leaf by- 
tearing the side-branches or the 
leaves off separately at each side; 
v. xuo [/], which describes the 
action of stripping a leaf by 
gliding along the mid-rib at both 
sides simultaneously as can be 
done in the case of a small leaf. 

bibi [.'] M to move to and fro, to 
grope about; obibi yo bibi re 
[./'."] he went here and there 
(not knowing where to go); v. 
baba 2 [/]. (2) to miss the way ; 
obibi ods [.."*] he missed the 
road. (3) to lead astray, in 
idiom, bibi [/] — agbo [.J lit. 
"to mislead (somebody) life"; 
f-5bibi f5-agbo o-en-iye na 
[J . '....'.] "it is he who misled 
me to where I am now", he 
brought me into the state in 
which I am now; v. gie [J] 
m * VY> ya[*]dido[/]. (4) to 
be foolish, senseless; ubibi [\\] 
are you mad? v. kiza [/]'. 

bie U] W to cook thoroughly, 
only of beans, so that they are 
well done. (2) to be cooked 
thoroughly, to be done; same 
as ga 2 [ ' ] ; iheoe na biere esese 
["J the beans are done. 

bis [ ' ] to bear (a child) ; yabi-o 
[ " ) ] ' ' who bore you ?": who are 
your parents? d-eke n-anabi-o 

"which place (is it 
that) you were born 1 1 , where were 
you born? cf. ibis [/]. 

bigobigobigD [".''] describes 
something very crooked, e.g. a 
tree with a stem that is bent 
several times, or a cripple 
walking zig-zag ; cf. bi ['] go [J ] ; 
v. xuruxuruxuru [**.,"]. 

bisibisi [ ] reddish brown, like 

the ordinary kind of house-mud ; 
used with the verb ba 1 [J]. 

b-isusu [ \ J to exorcise evil spirits 
by offering them isusu [_], i.e. 
food that is taboo to them ; cf. 

bo [ ] in b-oxi [* ] to make circles 
as part of the ritual of bodily 

boaboa [_] describes the walk of 
a big man who is in a hurry : he 
strides along powerfully and 
does not look where he goes so 
that he may stumble; a little 
funny-looking; used with the 
verb xia ["]. 

bobo [/] to move to and fro; of 
a fowl about to lay an egg; 
oxoxo na bobo [../..'] this fowl 
is running to and fro; cf. 

b o ['] (?). 

b-od£[/]; c /.bai [ ]. 

bosboebos or busbusbue [•/] de- 
scribes an idle sort of walk, or 
that of a man who is not feeling 
well ; used with the verb xia [ * ] . 

bo8s[ J describes the fall of an 
object like a palm branch, or the 
branch of a plantain, i.e. of a big, 
leafy, but not heavy branch; 
used with the verb de [ * ] . 

bolo [ '] to peel (skin); to strip 
(bark of a tree); obolo o-egbe 
[.//] he tore my skin off (when 
wrestling, e.g.); obol-egbe [_'•] 
he has a bruise; bol-itue ni 
n-ogi-aya b-owa [.'V '*..'] 
"strip that itue-tree (so) that it 
may enable (us) to use (it) for 



house-building ! " v. kpab [.']; 
rhua [J]. 

bo i [*] to build; b-owa [/] to 
build a house; ob-owa [/*] he 
built a house. 

bo 2 ["] (i) to tell the future; to 
predict; obo me [/•] he told me 
the future; n-obore [."] "who 
predicts comes ' ' : chiefs support- 
ing the Oba's (and Ezomo's ['*']) 
arms; they are said to tell the 
future for the Oba. (2) to have 
one's future told by a "doctor" ; 
irayabo o-oy-obo [')'''] I am 
going to (go and) have my 
future told at the doctor's (i.e. 
by casting the ogwsga [.%.]). 

bo 3 [ ' ] to be kind to somebody ; 
to treat kindly; to favour; 
obo^e gbe [."'•] he treats him 
kindly; impersonal: obo x>z [/*] 
it is favourable for me ; cf. isibo 
[/•] (a name). 

bobobo [...], also borpborp [....] 
gentle drumming such as on the 
oloi's ["] drum. (The word 
occurs in the Dxwahe song 6.) 

b-ogo [A]; e/.bEi [J]. 

bohu [.J big, of stalks of maize; 
same as boozi [ . J ; used with the 
verb ye [*]. 

bolozo [...] fleshy, fat; uyuye 
bolozo [" ' # . J you are becoming 
stout; v. itoto ['/]. 

boozi [ <# ] big and long, of cobs of 
maize; v. bohu [ # J. 

booe [/] (1) to spread grains (y-oto 
[".] on the ground). (2) to 
winnow, e.g. groundnuts, by 
crushing the husks and blowing 
away the light skin from the 
palm of the hands; bo(3-isawe~ 
we ni [..*./ J] winnow those 
groundnuts! (3) to shake off, 
e.g. sand, dust, but also fruit 
from a tree; boo-exae ni y-oto 

ukelaJo)wa [//'•....*] shake 
that sand off before you enter 
the house ! ruey-erha na n-om- 
ofe booe kua [..'.. J. J] shake 
this tree (so) that its fruit is 
shaken off! boo-egbe [..'] to 
brush and slap oneself with the 
hand, if covered with dirt, as 
after a walk in the bush, or in 
order to remove insects; v. udia 


bu ["] to be plentiful, numerous; 
eui na bu gbe [J.''] "these 
things are numerous" : many of 
these things are there; ifa bu 
[ 7 ] they are numerous ; bu [ ' ] 
gbe ["] means also "to suffice". 

bu 1 [)] (1) to meet; bu oe yade 
[/ • /] "meet me coming" : come 
and meet me ! ibu^sre xia [ , . / ' ] 
" I am meeting him going" : I am 
going to meet him. (2) to be 
equal in quantity, e.g. two heaps 
of grains when being compared 
by people when trading, bu [J] 
y-D [\\ to pay a sum of money 
towards something ; iy-isil-iss 
bu y-osa n-ioo-re (oe [)}) 

[/•; "I took five shillings 

paid towards the debt I owe 
him" (t is not nasalised). 

bu 2 [/] to decide ; bu ede [. .'] to 
fix a date, to make an appoint- 
ment for something ; obu eds me 
[/ VT" ne promised me a time": 
he gave me a date, i.e. when he 
would come. ibu w £de ns n-oyaya 
re [/* '..""*] I fixed a date for him 
when he should come, lit." which 
he should take to come"; 
ibu w ede ns n-iyaya s-eoa (ss [']) 
[ /\^v] I notified him when 
I* should arrive there, bu soo 
[/J to found a settlement; ya 
bu £uo na [" 'J"] who founded 
this "town"'? bu ohis [./] to 


give a decision about a lawsuit ; 
ohie n-oburu [.."/.] the "case" 
which he settled, bu [J] — ude 
[ . . ] to give warning, advice ; ibu 
ruo w (u)de fo ne I have 

warned you ! used when the man 
spoken to does not pay enough 
attention to the words; cf. ibude 


bu i [j] (i) to break, of wood, 
iron, bones, but not glass; 
ibu w obo [/*•] I broke (my) arm; 
obu w £f£ [/''] he broke it; iter.: 
buno^s gu o£ [.'./] break them 
for me! When followed by 
ikugkug ['/], buno means "to 
be wrinkled", of a face. (2) to 
get broken, to be broken; obufu 
[ J J it is broken. 

bu 2 [J ] to confess the name of a 
lover, by an adulteress ; this was 
formerly obtained by subjecting 
the woman to the feather-ordeal ; 
obu w ef£ [/ '*] she confessed him 
(to be her lovei) ; v. ka 1 [']. 

bua [J] to do something enough; 
used as second member of a 
verbal combination; igua bua- 
y-et-omaho [JJ,'"\\ I have 
been talking long enough, but 
(lit. "that") he does not hear 
me ; ixia 1-oke 1-ugboyodo bua n£ 

[.7 '....'] "I nave gone far and 
wide enough", i.e. I do not want 
to travel any more; cf. bue 

m (?)• 

bue [J] to stop for a long time in 
a certain place; the word was 
said not to be known to some of 
the young people; ute^abue 
o-eke n-uyo [.' *. 7~\] you have 
really stayed a long time in the 
place where you went! (-teya- 
expresses that the speaker did 
not think that he would stay as 
long as that) ; cf. bua [/](?). 

bukps [\] formula of thanks given 
by women after a meal; this is 
also used as a greeting to some- 
body who has sneezed; v. Eree 
[.M,kada [\J. 

buy£buy£ [ ] crumpled, of cloth ; 

oye buy£buy£ ["%'....] or [*\...] 
(oh) , it is crumpled ! (The fall on 
o- is due to emotional reasons.) 

(e)d- (1) an interrogative particle 
conveying the idea expressed by 
the pronoun ' ' which ' ' ; the nouns 
linked with it are followed by 
relative sentences: d-oua [ # \] 
which man: who; d-em [ 
which thing: what; d-£y£ [J, 
d-£kpo ["] which time: when; 
d-£d£ [ '] which day: when; 
d-eke [ / ] , d-ehe [ ' ] which place : 
where; d-as£ ['*], d-ako [ >t ] 
which spot: where; d-uki [ ] 
which month; d-zvo [ J which 
country. It is used alone in d- 
en-oxi [ # ' ] which (out of a cer- 
tain number) is it? (2) when used 
with o\5a [ # %] and repeated with 
a following noun or with oy-oe 
[*~\] ^ comes to mean "every 
one", e.g. d-o(5a d-oy-oe w£ ri- 

eoaue obD- r e [*.'V...'7.] 
everyone must eat his own food ; 
d-oi3a d-owa-re lao [ \ ' ) t J ] 
everyone must enter his own 
house, i.e. "I do not want you 
here any longer", 
da 1 ['] to have a severe, hard 
effect, in obo da^e [/••] "hand 
was hard on him": he received 
a severe blow; gi-obo da^e [..'*.] 
"let the hand be severe on him ' ' : 
hit him properly ! an encourage- 
ment for one party in a fight; 
oda o£ gbe [.**•] it grieves me 
very much; I am very sorry; 
idiom.: e(3i da^e [/\] "thing 


grieves him" viz. to give it 
away: he is stingy; cf. euidaue 


da 2 [ ] an auxiliary verb in- 
dicating (i) that the subject 
performs the main action of his 
own will, or initiative; t-idaru w 
se [' * *\] I shall do it of my own 
free will; omakerj-agi-o, ukeda- 

yaxia ['7."V."\] "it was not 
(yet) up to the time that you 

were sent, then you went on 
your own account": you went 
before you were sent. (2) (with 
a long vowel) that the subject 
is just starting to perform the 
main action; t-idaru^ee ["V'\l 
I am starting to do it (now). 

da 3 [ ' ] to drink alcoholic drinks, 
also d-anyo [ * ] ; cf. odanyo [...]. 

da 4 ['] to pour down, of rain; 
stronger than rho [J]; ams na 
dae-ssse [./."V'] the rain has 
come down with a vengeance; 
c/.da [/](?). 

da 5 [ ] in d-ita [ .] to take the 
ordeal ; da^e [ ' J take it ! da-re 

L\I P ass (it to) him! 

da6['] in d-iyo [" J rua ['] "to be- 
come smoke 99 : to be annihilated 
(in a war-song); also d-iy-ua 
[ V] > probably also in d-ihoi [\] 
to be in vain. 

da 7 [*] in d-iziya ['/] to commit 
a murder; Ojo d-iziya o-egb-ao- 

5f£ n-sy-ed-ia [/'/.V/^VJ °j° 
committed the murder of his 
wife three days ago. 

da 8 [•] in da ['] va ['], da [*] 
tu ['] to shout; da [*] tie [J] to 
shout (and call somebody) . 

da [J] to stretch out; to turn 
towards; in da^obo [ # /] to 
stretch a hand out (in order to 
obtain something). As second 
part of verbal combinations it in- 

dicates a direction towards some- 
body or something: gie ['] da 
[J ] to laugh in the direction of, 
or towards, somebody ; y£gie da 
Ce V "don't laugh towards 
me! "'but yegie Ce "don't 
laugh at me!" mu arjo ["J 
da [J] to turn one's face to- 
wards somebody. As first part 
of verbal combinations in da 

I J] na [*] to give somebody 
precedence of seniority, i.e. 
though being equal in age and 
position, as a matter of polite- 
ness; oda me gbe [./'•] he 
always gives me precedence. 
daL/]yi[']na['] to hold some- 
thing for somebody; mie da^e 
yi me (mie [J]) [/./] "take 
and hold it for me!" da [J] 
yi ['] xe [J] (a) to stop some- 
body until somebody else comes 
("to stop wait") ; da w e yi xe t5s 
['../] "stop him (to wait) for 
me!" (b) to adjourn (legal pro- 
ceedings) ; mad-en-ezo yi xe w iko 

n-ode [/• ' J] we adjourned 

the case until the next court 
("wait court which is coming"), 
da [J] yi[*]isalso"to prevent", 
e.g. in oda t3e yi n-iyegb-ebe na 
[."'•...".] he prevented me from 
writing this letter, lit. "that I 
might not write". In connection 
with a noun and a verb in d-am£ 
[J % ] na ['] (or gu [']) to catch 
dropping water for somebody; 
d-ame gu ve (or me ["]) ya nw- 
igap na [/..'.'.*.] "catch the 
(dropping) water for me to (take 
and) drink this cassava", d-obo 
[.'] yi ['] to hold on (doing 
something) ; d-obo yMtere [.'.*.'] 
hold on until I come ! 
da [J bad; em da no it is 

a bad thing (scil. to do) . 


dabadogu [ a tree, Pari- 
narium sp. 

dada [/] to carry (heavy things) 
by hand; odada^e xia [..."] he 
is carrying it along. 

dadaada [ * * * ] exact (ly) ; of time. 

d-anyo [/]; cf da 3 [*]. 

daoe [/] (1) to test; cf. odao(£)o- 
figbo [ ]. (2) to taste some- 
thing. (3) in dao-eho [ /] "to 
test ear": to listen; odat5-eho-re 
[.../.] he is listening to it. 

de 1 [ ' ] (1) to fall ; ode \)-uhui3-erha 
[.".'.*] he fell from the top of the 
tree; iter.: dele [/], e.g. in if a 
dele ['..%] they fell (one after 
the other), but if a de ['/%] they 
fell (all at the same time) . (2) to 
happen; to come about; u-oya- 
de Pv.'] ''what did it take to 
fall?": how did it come about? 
Combinations with verbs: de ['] 

ba [) ] to join ; v. ya 3 [' ] ba [/ ] ; 

ode ba^ifa [.-.*.] he joined 
them; ode ba-re J m ] it agrees 
to it; it goes with it, of different 
kinds of merchandise (e.g. beans) 
which can be mixed with each 
other in order to fetch a higher 
price, de [*] gbe ["] to fall on 
something, de ['] gb-oto [*J to 
fall on the ground, down; ofe 
o-obo de gb-oto [.'.'/.] it slipped 
from my hand (and) fell down, 
de ['] ku [J] to knock against 
somebody or something, e.g. in 
the dark; idiom.: de ku^erha 
ku iri [' ' '] to hit oneself 
here and there, "against rope, 
against wood " ; ode ku^erha ku w 
iri xia oo-d-anyo [.*..'..'**y ] he 
hits against this and that when 
he is drunk, de ['] lel-egbe [./] 
"to fall (and) follow one an- 
other": to fall one after the 
other, as e.g. bottles standing in 

a row; v. dele [/]. de ['] 
mudia ["] to stop dead when 
going or running, or e.g. when 
suddenly sliding. Combinations 
with a noun: d-igws ["] to 
kneel, but de-gwe ['J (a) to fall 
on one's knees, e.g. in wrestling; 
if a hegbasika o-ode-gws ['."..*.] 
they had just started shaking 
each other (as a preliminary to 
a wrestling-match) , when he fell 
down on his knees, (b) to remain 
unfulfilled ; to fail, of a promise ; 
enya n-onyafe hia de-gws 

[..'/.'.] an< tne promises he has 
given have not been carried out. 
(c) to sink in, of the nose, as 
an organic malformation; ihu- 
£te de-gwe ["•*.'.] his nose is 
sunk in, deformed. 

de 2 [*] in de ['] ks(e) [J] to 
remain, also de [*] ke [ /] re ['] ; 
inya n-ode ke re bu n-ayar-axw£ 
(teH) [.;•;•/•.] "yams which 
remain are many that we may 
eat (them) to-morrow": there 
remain for us many yams to be 
eaten to-morrow; n-ode kse 
r-eoa ["/*>] the remainder is 
there; cf. ks 1 [/]. 

de [J] to tie; to fasten; de [)] 
mu [ ' ] to tie to ; d-ere mu w erha 
na [J ..'.] tie it to this stick! 
cf. [J; v. gba 2 [']. 

de [^v] an exclamation calling 
attention to one's presence (A. 
Biogr.); v. ge [\]. 

dede [/] to embrace; v.mui ['], 
va 2 ['] mu [']. 

deye [".] (1) if; dey-sr-owa, 
ta ma-fe-tf-irhi-ukpo u-eua 

['J'-JJ.:..^ ^ he is n °t at 
home, tell him that I have taken 
a cloth from here ! (2) a particle 
implying that a question asked 
will be answered in the affirma- 


tive: "I hope..., I suppose 
. . . " : dey-uma [\J ] I hope you 
are well ? 
de ['] to buy; eOi n-udee ona xi 

[..'"YA] is this the thing you 
have bought? id-osisi [/**] 
I bought a gun; d-eoi na ms 
LA ] buy this thing for me! 
(ejn-od-eoi^kus [,,J'] "he who 
buys on credit" : debtor; cf. 
ad£ [*J; v. xis [']. 

de ['] Y e U] to see; ide y-sre 
[../.] I saw it; cf. bs ['] ye [/], 
ye [J]; v. mte [']. 

di i ['] to be brave; odl he is 

di 2 ['] to be hoarse; urhu di^e 
L.VJ "voice is hoarse (to) 
him": he is hoarse; v. sgogo 


dia i [ ] in dia ['] ke ['] to be 
near; v. si ['] ks [J], dia ['] 
ya [*] to stay somewhere; to 
lodge; odi-eoa ya [,..)'] he 
(often, or usually) stays here 
(the ya is not used in relative 
sentences); v. mu i [*]. 

dia 2 ['] to become, be straight; 
odiae [ # "\] it is straight. 

di w a [ ' ' ] to menstruate. 

dido [ ' J (i) to be old ; idiom. ; used 
by old people instead of xi- 
Smas [ / J for men, animals, and 
trees; ahiai5£ na dido [*'//.] 
this is an old bird, e.g. if its 
flesh is tough. (2) to be mighty, 
e.g. by possessing a powerful 
charm; v. wohia ['J. 

d-igwe f]; cf. de 1 [']. 

d-iyo [*.] rua [*]; cf. da 6 [*]. 

d-ihoi ['.]; cf. da6[*]. 

dina [/] to reach; to arrive; idin- 
eoa, imami-o£ u-owa [,/ V *. ."M 
I arrived there (but) I did not 
find him at home ; idiom. : din-od£ 
[,/] lit. "to reach the road": to 

be successful ; a curse : eoi n-uru 
hia syadm-od£ nwu£ \*\] 
lit. "things that you are doing 
all, it will not reach the road for 
you": whatever you do will not 
meet with success ; this can only 
be used as a curse, not in con- 
versation with a man who is 
unlucky, apparently because the 
expression itself is considered to 
be harmful; v. heoeheoe [ ]. 
di5 [J] to be senior; idi-ofe [//] 
I am senior to him ("I senior 
him"); cf odio [ *]; v. dido [" ], 
ixi(3i [•*.]. 


d-ivu [*J to (rot and) germinate; 

of seed-yam only, 
dioi [/] (1) to be deep; eze na dim 

& be [.)..''] this river is very 
deep. (2) to be hard to under- 
stand; to be idiomatic; exo-re 
diCi gbe [V./*] his conduct is 
hard to understand ; £do n-uz£e 
na £do n-odiui no [ " *y ] the 
Bini you speak is "deep" Bini, 
i.e. very idiomatic speech. (3) to 
go to the bottom of a river, etc. ; 
v. if aoif a [ .."%.] ; cf. dioidioi 
[-•], udi««e [.'YJ. 

dioidioi [••••] deep, but not 
narrow; v. gulugulu ["••]; used 
with the verb ye [*]; cf. dim* [/]. 

d-ixwkxwk rO*a [\,' )] not to 
reach normal size; to fall short 
in size, of men, animals, but 
also of corn; cf. xwiExwteexwis 
[*••]; v. kp£-iri [/J (of men and 
animals only). 

d-iziya ['/]; cf. da 7 ["]. 

do 1 [* ] (*) to weave, also used of 
the spider. du w ido [ . . ] to weave 
(ido [/] "weaving"), d-ukpo 
[\] to weave cloth. (2) to make 
baskets; gu vz hu^ooa n-ogua 
du^oxuae (ho [J]) [,'.,, J, 


help me to look for a man who 
knows how to make baskets ! 

do 2 ['] (i) to attend, e.g. du^ski 
[".] "to attend market to 
trade; du w ikotu [ / ] to attend 
at court, of chiefs; do^ugie, 
d-ugie ['J toholdanugie,of the 
Oba and his chiefs. (2) to be in 
full swing, of trade in the mar- 
ket; ski do [./] the market is 
on, or is in full swing. 

do 3 [ * ] to feed, of birds and bush- 
animals; v. re 1 ['] (of man and 
domestic animals). 

do [*] S a U] to stand around 
somebody or something; cf. 

do 1 \_ J ] a verb implying the idea 
"to come", but always followed 
by another verb: "to come in 
order to do something"; v. ya 
[/]; do^ s-sye na (as 1 ["]) 
U .J .] " coming to reach this 
time ' ' : up to this time ; until now. 

do 2 [ ) ] to do something secretly ; 
odo ru^se [ / *\] he did it secretly, 
do [J] gua [J] "to talk se- 
cretly": to whisper, do [J] 
gu ['] gua [J] to talk to some- 
body in secret; to whisper to 
somebody, do [J] mu ["] "to 
carry secretly away": to steal 
(heavy things), do [J ] rhie [) ] 
"to take secretly away": to 
steal; odo C-srhu rhie ['')] 
he stole me my cap; odo swu 
rhie gu x>z [."...'] he stole a 
garment for me. 

d-obo [.']; cf da [J], 

d-omia [/] to move to and fro, of 
people ill, drunk, drugged, or in 
agony; o^idomia yo domia re 
o-is-eoa [* * / ' ' ' \] he waswrith- 
ing (to and fro) in agony when 
I came ("reached") there; cf. 
d-ooe [/]. 

(e)doo ['] a common form of in- 
formal salute given when meet- 
ing somebody equal or inferior 
to oneself (same as koyo ['.]): 
hullo! plur. wa doo [/]; do te 
['J] indicates that the speaker 
is worried or absent-minded (v. 
Oxwahs [ J" J song 2); d-omo o 
['*•] a salutation addressed to 
chiefs, v. omo [ ']; do^swae 
n-obu ["./] "do, big family": 
answer of the senior of a clan to 
the clan-greeting (v. la 3 [']); 
instead of swae [_], sgbse 
or unis [ ' * ] can be used, 

d-ooe [/] to move to and fro 
without sleep; cf d-omia [/]. 

do ['] to become, be thin; lean; 
ot5a n-odoe [ "\] a thin, lean 
man; cf do [/] (?), udooe [.^J; 
v. si 1 [']. 

do [J ] yo ["X] to extinguish a fire; 
do^erhg yo [//] quench the fire ! 

do [J ] to stretch itself, of a spring- 
trap when catching; ifi na dofe 
[.'.J ] the trap has stretched 
itself ; cf do [• ] (?) 

dob [/] a verb indicating (1) that 
a certain action is performed 
again; v. weri-egbe [...']; odolo 
ru^se [ mm '*\] he did it again; 
dol-egbe [. /] is also used, e.g. in 
dol-egbe ta [..'*] to repeat (say- 
ing), dol-egbe ru [_*'] to repeat 
(doing). Hence, (2) to mend; to 
repair ; in dob [ # * ] ru [ * ] to repair, 
dob [/] yi ['] to repair, and, to 
prepare; also: to put in a safe 
place; dol-eteburu yi, atekpao 
[..*.."./] lay the table before 
we leave, dol-amiouaos [.'\J 
" to settle adultery" : to pay the 
fine which is, at least, partly used 
for the pacification-sacrifice (v. 
zo IJD> an d receive kola from 
the husband as a sign of re- 


conciliation. (3) dol-oto [/J to 
propitiate the ground, e.g. after 
a suicide, 
dob 2 [/] in dol-owa [ # /] to rub 
the walls of a house with water, 
mud, or leaves (Yor.) and cow- 
dung in order to smoothe them ; 
cf. dob 1 [ ']. 

dob 3 [/] in dol-ukpo [.'.] to sew 
a cloth, or clothes (not only " to 
mend ") ; cf. dob 1 [ "\\v. emasini 
I.*,], se[-]. 

doo [ J enticing (of women's eyes) ; 
v. si^aro [*'J. 

dofe [/] (1) to put rafters on a 
house previous to thatching it. 
(2) to grow up; idiom, for 
nwa 1 [J]; mostly followed by 
de [J] or re ['] "coming"; 
oyadoCs re ns xerhe, iyaagi-Ef-Edo 

[ '"."..'] when he will be 

grown up a little, I shall be 
sending him to Benin. (3) in 
doMyi [ ' ] to impose a law. 

duduudu (anddududu?) ["*] quite 
black, e.g. soil under a rubbish- 
heap; osie^e duduudu [.),"'] it 
is quite black ; cf. dudddd [ • • • ] 

dududu [ • • • ] dark blue, like ink, 
police uniforms, and avocado- 
pears ; used with the verb bi [ ' ] . 

due [J] to scatter. 

du w £ki fj, du Jkotu [./.], d-ugie 

[•J; cf. do 2 [•]. 

d-ugba[\] to dance the ugba ['J- 


duuu [ # ] (1) to pound; odut5-ema 
[..".] he is pounding fufu; duu- 
exwae [/J to make an exwae 
[\]-charm, exwae [' ] is always 
pounded and then made (ma 4 
[*]) into an oblong lump; duo- 
exwae comprises the entire 
process. (2) to forge; not used 


dysyendyEyen [*"•] imitation of 
the noise made by the emada's 
anklets (aba ['.] or efo(5o [\J). 

d3od3od3o [ m _ ] describes the noise 
made by lubasere ['.'*]. 

eba [/] (1) a timber-tree, Lophira 
procera; leaves are red at first, 
and become green later on. 
(2) red tail feather of the grey 
West African parrot; same as 
ebaxus [ # %J; cf. ba 1 [)]. 

eba [ / ] nakedness ; cf ba [ * ] . 

eba now; same asenwa 
and nia [J ] ; eba w ure [/ now 
you have come! od-eba 
he is coming now; eba nia [.'/], 
same as eba; ebaba [.W] just 

ebaya [ . % , ] restiveness ; v. zs 1 [ ' J, 
ebe [/] (1) leaf; herb; special 
herbs (and other plants called 
ebe): eb-ayad-eha [ ' *] "three- 
pointed leaf" (cf. 'eha [/]): 
a shrub, Allophyllus africanus. 
eb-ahahi a shrub, Piper 

umbellaium; fruit used as a 
medicine against dysentery; leaf 
as substitute for toilet-paper 
(cf. ha [J] (?); ehi [.J (?)). 
eb-ahe [ ] fern ; there are two 
sorts distinguished by A. : eb-ahe 
n-oyi-oba [.V"] (meaning?), 
the larger sort, said to be "use- 
less " , and eb-ahs ne giE^e [."%.'..] 
"the small fern", used for 
closing both ends of present- 
parcels sent to the Dba ; it is also 
tied (in bunches) to oms ['*], 
the palm-leaf fringes, at every 
juju-shrine; it is an auspicious 
plant, and without it as a sign 
of friendship the juju will not 
accept any sacrifice; its seed is 
difficult to be seen, and there- 
fore it brings prosperity in life 

to the man who sees it; it is as 

much worth as osumare [ ], 

the fruit of uruhe [_*], and the 
placenta of a cow; eb-akpe [/•] 
a plant, Millettia thonningii ; the 
leaf is used against dysentery, 
eb-eni [/•] (eni [ / ]) a kind of leaf 
(not the one called "elephant- 
grass ") used as thatch ; it lasts for 
about five years, and if there is 
a fire in the house, for seven or 
more years (v. ebi^eba [."*]). 
(eb-euari£ [//] another name for 
the fish aroe [ * J ; when dried, its 
skin is oily like the leaf wrapped 
around eoaris [./]). eb-Egogo 
[."*] a tree (F.D. list: ebogogo), 
Carapa procera ; leaves are used 
to cover the ridge of thatched 
roofs; they are tied to ekwe [/] 
(palm branches that are woven 
together), ebi^eba [/'•] an in- 
ferior sort of eb-eni [.'*]; used 
for parcelling food-stuff, eb-iy- 
edo re [.".'] "leaf of the money 
the Binis are eating": a small 
plant, Ageratum conyzoides; it 
has a white " cotton "-tuft at its 
top; used in the following 
symbolic way: if somebody 
comes with a request to an 
influential clerk or a man in an 
important position, he will be 
shown this leaf as a veiled 
question for a bribe or a pre- 
sent, hence the name, eb-is-ugu 

t.'\] M t.J) "leaf of vol- 
ture-f aeces ' 1 : a leaf used for 

rubbing house-walls ; it is mixed 

with charcoal and gives the walls 

a black colour (v. usie [/]); its 

name probably comes from some 

similarity of its quickly growing 

patches with the splashed faeces 

of vultures. eb-itetE [ /_] an afo 

[/]-leaf used for a soup (v. 

unwooE [,.,]) and for purposes 
of purification. eb-Dd5d5 [.***] a 
small plant, Talinum triangu- 
lar e\ used in preparing a soup 
(v. afo [/]) with a taste similar 
to that of ocro-soup; eb-ododo 

n-ule na ru amaame [.'.*.. .~\ *] 
this ododo-soup you have made 
is watery, eb-uite ['\] " salt- 
leaf" : a creeper, Manniophyton 
africanum ; it causes itching when 
touched, hence the name, ebe n- 
oy-3ba[..7-](y£[;]) "the leaf 
that pleases the, Oba": a tree, 
Monodora myristica, same as ikp- 
osa; it is said that somebody 
once showed its leaf to the Oba 
and that the Oba was pleased with 
it and gave the man a wife and 
a servant; the flower of this 
tree, called iyoha [...], "pawn", 
is used in a game. Redupl. ebebe 
LV] or [. *'] green; oru^ebebe 
L.Y] it is green. (2) paper; 
also: ebe n-agb-ebe (or n-aya- 

[.']) LJ.l Ht. "leaf that is 
used for writing". (3) book ; also : 

ebe n-atie [ /] "leaf that is 

read" or, eb-ebo [/*] "Euro- 
pean leaf"; eb-imu [/J warrant 
of arrest. 

eb£ [/] wine-tapping; cf. be [J]. 

eb£ [/] boundary between farms 
of owners sharing the same plot ; 

c f- ebg [..] (?); v. se 1 [']. 

ebg [..] pointed iron rods or 
broken glass (covered) serving 
to keep people off from farm- 
land; cf. eb§ [/] (?) 

ebi [/] darkness; mostly redu- 
plicated: ebiebi [.'*]; ebiebi so 
gbe [ **-.] "darkness has dark- 
ened much": it is very dark; 
ebiebi so [/'♦] "darkness is 
darkening": it is getting dark; 
cf. bi 1 [']; oirkdui [...J. 


ebo [*•] European; white man; 
ebo n-oxwa [*/.] "the great 
white man": the Governor; eb- 
igedu [*•••] manager of a timber- 
camp; cf. Yor. oyibo [ m .J]. 

ebobozi [,..*] (o- seems also to be 
used as a prefix) a dish prepared 
from cassava : unground cassava 
is cooked, then cut in slices, and 
kept in water until daybreak. 
It is eaten during farm work 
because it is easy to prepare and 
can be kept; it is considered to 
be rather inferior, and it is 
mostly eaten by poor people; 
ebobozi is said to have been the 
original way of preparing cas- 
sava (together with eferhinys 
[.. .]) before ekpukpu [.**], usi 
[/], and igap [*/] were intro- 
duced, which are the most usual 
cassava dishes now. 

ebubs [_J dust; fine sand; v. 
exae [' J. 

ebubule [..."] a herb used as an 
ingredient for soups by the 
Akure people (Yorubas); it is 
said to be able to cure elapurhu 
[/••], fugitive swellings. 

eda [/] rain-water; cf. da [j]. 

edae [J] a " tying" -charm used 
to ward off death, in cases of 
fainting, unconsciousness, or 
approaching death; agb-edae y- 

o^-uhuuu o-okuore [ m 'J ' J .] 

edae was tied to his head when 
he had fainted. 

Edaiks [J'] title of the heir to 
the throne in Benin; he has a 
court of his own at Uselu [_'], 
and is a member of the Uzama 


edaos [.~\J examination; ' cf. 

dat5s [/]. 
ede i [/] buffalo; bush-cow; cf. 

Yor. ede [,/]. 

ede 2 [/] a strong creeper con- 
sisting of many threads. 

ede [/] (i) grey hair. (2) grey: 
ofua u-eds [/••] it is grey (lit. 
' ' white ' ') like grey hair ; v. to [ ' ] , 
emus [ J. 

edi [ " ] civet-cat ; v. oxe 2 [ / }. 

edia n-ukpako [..".] a kind of 
white yam with a faint smell; cf. 
ukpako [*'.]," v. ema 2 [ J. 

edigue [ _ J villager ; bushman ; cf. 
dia 1 igue 

edifa. [/J here; more vague than 
et5a [ # \] "this spot": this side, 
way, part ; in this place ; edif a w 
oye fa [."..'.] is it in this place? 

Edogu [/*] title of a war-chief; 
Praise-name: v. Abigege ['/"]; 
cf. Yor. ogu [*•]. 

edo [*J a large flying insect; it 
sheds its wings; edible. 

Edoni ['/] name of an Dba. 

edooe roof, the whole con- 

struction, including the thatch, 
but not used for iron sheets, v. 
ekpamaku [./']; edou-owa na 
mayo gbe [/ * \/"\) the roof of 
this house is not very high. 

edu^ava [ . " . ] driver (form used 
by old people and women; 
nowadays, edraeva is generally 
used) . 

ee [•] answer to the salute koyo 
['.] Tyes"); ee-ko [•'] "yes, 

efa[ e J a ''band" of the Obas who 
purify breaches of taboos (awua 

[..]) . at the Sguae [.J; they are 
relatives of the Dba ; the sacrifice 
to otoe [ . . ] is also performed by 
them; they form a special sib 
under the Ogi-efa [.'..]. 

efada [_*] missionary, especially a 
Roman Catholic father. Engl. 

e f £ [..] M side (of the body); efs 
xia ds [...'] "(my) side aches 


me"; ogb-eoi y-oo-efe [.* /.] he 
hit me (something) in the side. 
(2) efg-so [ /] some parts (not a 
good expression, considered as 
"boyish" speech, v. ihe ['.]); 
efe-so yema v-o [„' J J\\ some 
parts are still good in it. 

eferhinys [./J a dish made from 
unsifted cassava : the cassava is 
ground, and the starch (usi [/]) 
pressed out ; the remaining pow- 
der is left for two days to 
ferment, and is then fried. This 
dish has been given up by the 
Binis, but it is still the stock 
food of the Jekris and Sobos ; cf. 
Port, farinha; v. ebobozi [../], 
igati [V], ekpukpu [/']. 

eft [_] violent storm. 

efu [..] bullet; v. igele [..J (shot), 
uke [/]. 

e * u [."%] fleshy parts, flesh, of 
animals and human beings. 

ega 1 [.'] main part of the cult of 
Oxwahs [ t J,] known to adult 
men only; c/.gai ['], ugaue [.%.]. 

ega 2 [ / ] a fence across the bush on 
which traps are set ; also : ega^ifi 

[."'] (ifi [.'] trap); cf. ga [J]. 

egalahi [ . f \ . ] small drinking-glass ; 
liqueur glass ; cf. Engl. 

egedege [."'] a double-storey 
house; v. kpstesi [/J. 

egie [_] title (of a chief) egi- 
asegbere [.".*.] hereditary title ; 
short for egie n-are osegbe^osegbe 

[ \ \] "title that is taken 

('eaten') turn by turn"; here- 
ditary titles are those of the 
Ezomo [ ], Oliha [" * ], Sro[ ' ], 
EdDhs [..'], Obto [ '*'], Ehob 
N-ije [ * * ' ] and Elogbose [/."] 
(also called Ologboshere) ; also 
Ogiaoe [_'], Elema ["'], and 
those of the Ogies; not here- 
ditary are the "body-titles" 

(egi-egbe [/'*]), i.e. those of the 
chiefs representing the Oba's 
eye, head, etc. as well as the 
8hi w oba [.'"], and the titles of 
the Exaeoo [ ] chiefs; cf. ugie 
[..] (?),ogie [v.], igie [..] (?). 

Egi-enwa [... ] a clan which is 
said to have originated from 
Akurs. Chief Edogu [/*] belongs 
to it ; cf. ogie [..] (?) ; v. sgbse 

Egi-esa [ a J a sib to which most 
Ishan (Esa [*J) people belong; 
its head is the Ezomo [ ' " ] who 
is said to have been king of 
Ishan at one time. Chief LP 
nwagws [ \ J also belongs to this 
sib; cf. ogie [.J; y. egbse [,\]. 

egils [' ] land-snail; v. akerekere 

Ego [ J a Bini village situated on 
the road leading to Siluko (Is- 

iloko [/\]). 
egusegbe [/•] (1) a force serving 
Dxwahs [,y ,] and represented 
in his shrine ; it reminds the god 
of any broken oaths that were 
sworn by him, and it also helps 
to kill a man who has trespassed 
against him: lit. "helper to 
kill"; c/.guH, ere [\], gbe [*]. 
(2) a rope with a noose meant 
to entrap the victim's foot; 
used in the trap otohio [.%.]. 

eguozaa [/Y] cr Y °f onlookers 
used to encourage people who 
are felling trees on a new farm. 

egwi [/] the land-tortoise; it is 
the clever animal in folklore; 
praise-names : eoi z-okp-ows 
L.."Y] "the thing that swag- 
gers" (proudly) ; em nyaka [...'] 
"the thing that walks like a 
cripple"; v. emosima [.'..], 
sruix) [/J, elukeluke [..'.']. 

egba [/] hunter's hide ;v. oxe 2 [/]. 


egbagbo [ # /] faith; belief; nowa- 
days iyayi [/•] is more in use; 
of. Yor. gba gbo [J], 
egbaha [\ J beam supporting the 

wall above a door, 
egbalaka J ladder, 
egbarozaro [//J an illness similar 
to esalo [.\.]; it attacks the 
hands or feet in the form of 
pimples which are very painful ; 
there is no swelling, but a dis- 
charge of mucus; if treated, it 
breaks out at another spot; cf. 
gbef], Z8 2 (?) □, aro[.J. 
egbaxia [ _ ] lover, used of women 
but also of men ; the word does, 
however, not necessarily imply 
sexual relations, 
egbe [/] (i) body; egbe n-okp-ooa 
(kpe [J]) [..J\] "body that 
is beating a man": a kind 
of jerking pain in the bones, 
perhaps due to rheumatism; 
also called egbe n-ofi_oi5a w ei5i 

[ ~\] "body that is striking 

a man a blow"; idiom.: egbe ue 
da 6e [ . ' / ] " my body is precious 
to me": I am careful not to 
hurt myself ; imu w egbe gb-okuta 
[."•;•] "I took body struck 
stone": I hit myself against a 
stone; egbe gu^ee ru [.'.J'] 
"body is doing with her": she 
is having a miscarriage (there 
is said to be no wilful abortion 
nor abortive medicine; but 
others, e.g. repudiated lovers, 
are occasionally, though not 
frequently, held to be the cause 
of miscarriages); egbe muj 
[,''\] he is fooling about, or 
intruding, out of high spirits; 
itu^ere y-egbe n-ohs [ " " • ' ] 
"I did (it) to him to (his) body 
as (lit. 'give'(?)) a present": 
I did this to him without his 


being able to take revenge ; egbe 
is further used in the following 
compound expressions : egb-ame 
[.""Y]=okp-eze [ *\ ] riverside; 
bank (Egh. Hist.); egb-eke [/J 
house-wall ; egb-owa [/•] latrine ; 
the general term; not as out- 
spoken and "boyish" a term as 
ow-isa [.\]. (2) one another; 
each other; if a gu egbe gblna 
[*/*'.'] they fought each other. 

(3) the same (with oni ['J] 
that ") ; egb-on-iw-en-udo ms 

[;;'-;] "that body (which) I 
said (we [J]) that you might 
weave for me": the "same that 
I told you to weave for me. 

(4) will ; egbe n-uyasu oe w it-egbe 
[..*7'.\] "body you took to 
lead ( = accompany) me is not 
(sc. your own) body " : it was not 
of your own will that you 
accompanied me; egbe^it-egbe 
n-uyaha S-osa [.*'..*'. it was 
not of (your own) will that you 
paid me (your) debt (the i may 
also be omitted or, at least, 
be very faint). (5) though (v. 
rhe [}]); egbe n-uya ru^ee, 
t-iyayegb-us [.."'\''J J] "body 
you took to do it, I shall still 
flog you": though you have 
done it (viz. in spite of your 
previous refusal), I shall still 
flog you ! egbe n-imaya hemi-os, 
iyesie ns V.S] "though 
I had not yet seen him, I still 
denied for him ", viz. that he had 
done a certain thing. 

egbemuoe high spirits; cf. 

egbe [/], mu 1 [']. 

egbepxoOe [. / \ ] easy life ; leisure, 
as e.g. the wife of a "big" man 
with many servants has; cf. 
egbe [/], zoxo [/]. 

egbo [/] felling trees, when mak- 

ing a new farm; egbo fo ne o- 
ugbo rue U a [.'../..] is the fell- 
ing of trees finished already on 
your farm? cf. gbo [']; v. iterha 

e S b3 [ .] (i) a high fence (with 
openings at the side) made of 
ixioi [ * \ ] -trees, and standing at 
the village entrance (uye ["J); 
it keeps off evil spirits and bad 
charms; ixioi is used because 
of its particular "power" as the 
most senior, "aged", tree. (2) 
a name. 

egboyo [\ J native tobacco, much 
planted on farms. 

egbu ["] a kind of woodpecker 
with a big head and short beak 
(akpalakp-erha [....'] has a 
smaller head, but its beak is a 
little longer). 

eya [\] (1) chain; not as big as 
Dgiop [.*']; eya na koko gbe 
['J ./•] this chain is very big. 
(2) prison (in the meaning of 
imprisonment) ; amu_£ y-eya 
[/••J they put him in prison; 
cf. Yor. enwo [ # J ; cf. also oleya 

Eyaeuo [_J "sharers of the 
country": this term refers to 
two groups of Bini chiefs, the 
Eyaeoo N-ogbe [../.] and the 
Eyaeuo N-ore [..."]. While the 
first group contains the house- 
hold officials at the £guae [ # J , 
the second consists of the fief- 
holders in the country, who, 
however, reside in Benin City. 
The four most important mem- 
bers of this group are: lyase 
Osuma ['/] ; they are also called 
Eyasoo n-ens [.,.*%.], "the four 
Eyaeoo"; while the others are 
the Eyasuo n-ikoto [ . /\ m ] , the 

" lower eyaEoo " ; cf. yae [J], eoo 
[..]> Ogbe [\], o t e r ]. 
eyita [/'] a position in the og* 
wega [ t \]-divination (o.o.o.c); 
of Yor. origin? 

e tf° L ( T ) rubbish lying in the 
house in the morning before it 
is swept; v. ikpoleyo [.'*>]. 
(2) bad taste in, and smell from, 
the mouth, esp. in the morning. 

e tf° [..] present of food given to 
e.g. emosima [.*..], the tortoise, 
when seen by a worshipper of 
Oxwahs [ t J J. 

eyoyo ["] a tree, Trichilia 
prieuriana, but also Duboscia 
viridifiora ; used as firewood only. 

e X°C £ [. '.] an idiomatic word for 
conception, pregnancy, used 
when wishing that young people 
or foreigners may not under- 
stand what is being said; v. 
rhie [J], 

eyo [/] eating-feast; cf. [J]. 

eyute ["*] camp near the river; 
beach; eyute n-Dmose ["...'] 
"a beautiful shore", beginning 
of a Christian hymn in Bini; cf. 
Yor. ebuts [../*]. 

eha [/] three; ed-eha [/•] three 
days; ax-eha [/*], three 
pots; axe-n-eha [,.\] the three 
pots; eha^iro o-ugie[ / "\ * ]"three 
are not in twenty": seventeen; 
redupl. eheha ["/] all the three; 
eheha [ "% ] in groups of three. 

eha [/] in eha^egbe hia ["•.] 
dressing up ; originally : dressing 
up as masquerade dancer; cf. 
ha 2 [J]. 

eha [\] six; ifa eha de [\'J] six 
of them are coming. 

ehaekps [ ^ J name for the group 
of chiefs who are neither mem- 
bers of the Uzama [/J nor of 
the EYasuo [ ## J. Their leader is 


chief Obas-ogie ['*•]; cf. Ekpg 
[..] (?)• 

ehako [ .*\ J film on teeth ; cf. ako 
[.J, ehe [/] is not used alone. 

ehaya [/J hire; rent; ehaya 
umujkeke rue yi ra [/ ; * * J • ] 

" (is it) hire you put your bicycle 
on": do you hire your bicycle 
out? cf. Engl.; v. iyo i ["]. 
ehe [*J food given to one's wife 
to be cooked; v. we ['], emehe 


ehe [. ] M P lace ; in-ehe [...'] 
"Iam going somewhere": I am 

going on a journey, or, on a 

walk; eheikehe [//] wherever; 

eheikehe n-orhirhise, eo-oma 

gbina(6e [J]) [,\J ) ) 

wherever he goes, he must fight ; 

v. (e)d — . (2) chance, same as 

eke [ ']; imami-ehe n-aru w ee 

[ . .V"\] I nave no chance to do 
it. (3) menstruation; v. owa[/], 
ukpo [ ]. 
ehe [*J fish; eh-5gb5 [7 J fresh 
fish; ehs n-okae [\'W dried 

Ehegbuda [/*.] name of an Dba; 
he instituted the Ibiwe [,\]- 

Ehemihe [.."%.] name of an Dba. 

(e)hia [/] all; vi-ehia re [/*•] 
bring them all! ena hia-t-oyoe 
[,/'V] all these (things) are his; 
idiom.: ehia w ehiaxi [/*/] "all is 
all" : it is all the same, and ehia w 
ehia xi me [.'.*], ehia w e hia xi 
Ce-re [.".. .] it is all the same to 
me (-re means something like 
"concerning it, in reference to 


ehiaya 1 [...], also ihiaya, (1) tassel ; 
ehiay-oka [/"J tassel of corn 
(maize). (2) a small bell worn 
by some priests. 

ehiaya 2 [ tt J naught ; nil. 

eho 1 [/] (1) ear; v. daoe [/]. 
(2) edge; eho-re \j J its edge 
(of a table, cloth, etc.) ; cf. the 
use of Yor. eti [•']. 

eho 2 [/] (1) an annual sacrificial 
festival to the ancestors; ifa. 
yaru w eho ['/..'] they are per- 
forming the eho-festival (or: 
ri w eho [..']); v. orhu 2 [/]. 
(2) (with a god's name as a 
following genitive): an annual 
festival of a god, e.g. eh-oloku 
[."•] festival of Oloku [***]; eh- 
osu [/•] festival of Osu [/]. 
The latter takes place about 
April; the ewaise [ ## J, the 
priests assistants, beat drums 
(iyede [...]) and dance, and while 
dancing they perform magical 
tricks; these are said to be 
taking a tortoise out of their 
abdomen, vomiting scorpions, 
stabbing themselves with knives 
without injury, and sowing 
plants which grow up immedi- 
ately. The priest himself is said 
to turn into a leopard, elephant, 
chimpanzee, an oil-palm, etc., 
transforming himself into a cow 
being the most difficult degree. 
Eho [ J a village on the boundary 
between Bini and Ishan country; 

Ehodo [/'] title of a chief who 
supervises (and helps in) the 
butchering of animals for the 
Dba, and slaughters at all the 
Dba's sacrifices; he is given 
parts of the slaughtered animals ; 
a praise-name is: Ehodo n- 
oriafaoe [/'\..J "Ehodo the 

ehoyae[/'] a term derived from the 
ogwega -position ohoyae 

[."] (v. oha [/]); this position is 
believed to indicate enmity from 

a brother by the same father, 
hence ehoyae means something 
like: "a brother by the same 
father who is, at the same 
time, one's enemy", "hidden 
enemy among one's relatives". 
It seems, however, that the 
term can also be used without 
any connotation of enmity, only 
to denote paternal relatives. (A 
brother by the same mother 
is not usually one's enemy; this 
was explained by the fact that 
he is "of the same blood", and 
that he shares one's properties.) 
Cf. oyae [/]. 

ehDi5e [."Y] purification (general 
term); cf. hovz [/];». ihouegbe 
[....], ihooowa [_J, ihoosoo 

Eka [/] the Ika-people (and lan- 
guage) inhabiting the Agbor 
Division of Benin Province, and 
Igbake [/Jin the Benin Division ; 
they are a branch of the Ibo- 
speaking peoples. 

eka [ * J " biscuits "; a baked or fried 
foodstuff consisting of maize: 
eka w oka [ ' " J of beans eka w ere 
[" * J, of yam ek-inya ['*•] (fried 
with oil or lard, or baked; maybe 
ground before), or of plantain 
eka w oysde ['*.. J (plantains cut 
and fried); cf. Yor. akara [..J. 

ekaewe [.\] sgl. o- a band of "the 
Oba's consisting of some of his 
relatives and performing the 
sacrifices at the ugies, together 
with the Ihama [*/]. 

eka^a (or ikaya) [„J (i) bridle. 
(2) gag; v. uxu [/]. 

ekaikai [/"] measles (?), same as 
snwinwa [ " J . 

ekalaka [.,%.] glass tumbler, pro- 
bably Port, caneca; v. ukpu [' ], 
igobele [/.J, egalahi [ #t \]. 

ekarasi [../] kerosene, also called 
am-urhukpa [ . J " lamp- 
water". Engl. 

ekasa [_J (i) a tree, Omphalo- 
carpum procerum; husks of its 
seeds, put on a string, are 
wrapped in "bamboo" (raffia) 
leaves and worn round the feet 
as a rattle. (2) rattle (v. above). 
(3) a dance performed after the 
Dba's coronation at which ekasa 
rattles are worn. 

eke [/] place; eke n-iye [„/] the 
place where I five; v. ehe [ ']. 

Ekegbia [/J title of a chief, the 
senior of the Isieoero [ J sib. 

ekeze [ /] a masquerader repre- 
senting a spirit Ekeze who 
appears when the Ovia [/]- 
society dances, disturbing the 
masqueraders, and driving them 
away. The Dvia people fight him, 
but, however numerous, they 
are always conquered; called 
ekeze n-iy-ef it3i [../"• J" Ekeze, 
the mother of the god". 

eks [/] rest-day of a god (every 
fifth day) when the priests stay 
at home, adorning their juju; 
whoever works, is supposed to 
meet with bad luck; cf. ede [/]. 

eks [ J (1) mud (for house- 
building) ; eke n-exwi [./J black 
mud, mixed with ulakpa [./], 
the red and best mud, in house 
building ; ek-exexae [/'J sandy 
mud; formerly used to fill 
swampy spots in the rain-pit 
(ukpafs [/J) now also for 
plastering the house-walls ; it is 
used for building when other 
mud is lacking; ek-6bue [/*] 
clay (for pottery), v. obue [*' J; 
v. also oroxo [ ], orhue [ ]. 
(2) wall, ek-6gbe [ * ] "wall of 



Ogbe": the wall running round 
the 8guae [.J, esp. the Dba's 
harem. There was once a law 
that anybody who touched this 
wall was to be killed. This, 
however, led to so many false 
denunciations that the Oba de- 
creed that the man who de- 
nounced the offender should be 
killed as well. Since then,it is said, 
there has been no further report. 

eke [,\] egg; ek-5xoxo [/'J hen's 
egg; ekg-kpekpeye [/'**] duck's 
egg. Throwing eggs at a man is 
the greatest insult in Benin. 

eki [" J a pad used when carrying 
loads (cloth, grass, etc.) ; same 
as ukuoki ["J; uyuga rhi-eki 
[."".] " may you not serve (and) 
take the pad " scil. " as your only 
reward' ' : may you be rewarded 
for your service (to a servant 
coming from work, as an answer 
to his greeting, by a senior 
man). There is also a curse: 
t-uraga rhi-eki ['*..'.] may you 
serve and receive a pad (as 
your reward) . 

ekia ['"] (i) penis. (2) eki-osisi 
[ ] trigger of a gun. (3) eki- 
awa [""•] "dog's penis": a shrub, 
Erythrina spec, (also Callichilia 
stenosepala) ; one has a long 
fruit and a dark green stem, the 
other, a short fruit (distribution 
of the Latin names unknown). 

(e) kigbesiy eha [."."] " missing ten 
in sixty": fifty. 

ekita [ # '.] dog; cf. Ibo nkita [/ * •] ; 
v. ooi-akota [. ...], awa [/]. 

eko [.'] (1) a "camp", i.e. a tem- 
porary, though possibly long- 
inhabited settlement for pur- 
poses of hunting, farming, and 
formerly war; ek-ays [."%.] a 
shelter consisting of four poles 

and a roof of mats, serving e.g. 
as a market stall ; cf. oko 1 [ ] ; 
v.&go[ ],oxogboi[."]. (2) name 
of Lagos (Yor. eko [./]); per- 
haps the name is of Bini origin, 
as there is a tradition that Lagos 
was founded as a Bini war-camp. 

ekoko cocoa; Engl. 

ekokohie [/ 'J] native spoon con- 
sisting of the cover of a snail's 
shell; still used by a few old 
people, and in bush- villages ; v. 

akerekere [..."%.]> eku y s [.."]: 
eku [/] malice; ekueku [.'*] 
wrong; false; undue; ogbe o- 
ekueku [//'] he flogged me 
without reason; v. iyo 1 [**]. 
eku semen. 

ekus ["] bellows; ozo gua kp- 
eku-sssse O j o knows 

very well (how) to work the 

ekusfe [.J.] a bird the cry of 
which is said to spell evil, and 
it is believed that a district in 
which it is frequently heard will 
have many deaths; the cry is 
interpreted as ku^efs kekskEkSM 
[/. ] "tie it (viz. a corpse) 
strongly ! ' ' and the evening- and 
night-cry is: soo foo "the 
country (or village) is finished ! " 
After the first cry, a death is 
expected in three or seven days' 
time; if somebody is ill at the 
time of the cry, "the witches 
will expect his death; for it gives 
the witches power". Therefore, 
the bird is shot if it is possible ; 

cf. ku 1 VI 
ekuku [/J cook. Engl, 
ekuys [,/] (European) spoon; cf. 

Port, colher; v. ekokohis [/ 'J], 
ekuzo ["'J a shrub, Ongokea 

klaineana; cf. eka [* ](?); uzo 

[•.] (?). 


ekwabo [**•] upper arm; cf. abo 
[."], ekwaws ["%J. 

ekwawe [*\] thigh; c/. owe [.J, 
ekwabo ["•]. 

ekwsmo [ ' * * ] (also ekwomo ["']) 
a fat brown rat, same as sbete 
[".]; v. esi i [.J. 

ekpa [/] vomiting; cf kpa 3 [*]. 

ekpa [\] hitting; knocking (with 
the fist); boxing (not a sport); 
ekpa-re tu gbe ['/ * ] "his 
boxing resounds (much) " : he has 
a good way of hitting. 

ekpa [ J a present given to the 
Oba in order to notify him of a 
sacrifice going to be performed 
(in which he is going to take 
part); this is done e.g. by the 
followers of the god Dxwahs 
I J. I 

ekpaxudo [./•] a tree, Albizzia 
zygia; the leaves are used for 
soup, the wood as firewood. 

ekpakara [/"] a beetle found on 
the raffia palm (ago [ ]) and 
the oil palm (udi [/]); it sucks 
juice out of the cuttings made 
by wine-tappers, or out of the 
stumps of felled palms; v. 
oru ['J]. 

ekpakpahuoaga [...'. J scorpion. 

ekpakpehi [/'J a ' iong loaf of 
yam-fufu similar to a loaf of 
bread; v. osugba ['"]. 

ekpakpoyo [/-J a tree, Canarium 

ekpalakpala a flat fish, 

possessing many bones and 
rough scales, and therefore not 
appreciated, it has a red and a 
blue stripe on either side; cf. 
xwaraxwara [••••]. 

ekpamaku [,/•] corrugated iron 
sheet ; ekpamaku n-aya ka owa 
[..*..*..'] corrugated iron that is 
used to "thatch" houses. 


ekparhurhu [/-J a small wasp 
that has its nest on creepers. 

ekpekukpeku [/*"] a shrub the 
fruit of which is used as a poison 
for rats; it is reputed to drive 
them mad; but if the onlooker 
laughs, the "power of the medi- 
cine' ' is supposed to weaken so 
that the rat will not die; also 
called: ekpekukpeku n-ogb-ofe 
[.'"...*] "ekpekukpeku which 
kills rats". 

ekpskpsye [/*'] duck; cf. Yor. 
kpekpsye ['"]. 

Ek P° [ . . ] a masquerade-society of 
young boys, imitating the Ovia 
[/]-society; no mirrors and 
cloths, as in Dvia, are used for 
the masquerade-dress, but only 
palm-branches and ropes; the 
senior is called oh-skpo [.~Y] 
"priest of ekpo"; their purpose 
was stated to be mainly "cheer- 
ing up the quarter", but they 
have a juju as well (in form of 
a stick) which has a certain 
power; thus e.g. barren women 
may sacrifice a cock to it, and 
offences against it are also ex- 
piated by the sacrifice of a cock ; 
members of the society some- 
times bar a road by means of a 
rope in order to obtain a small 
toll from passers-by. Where 
there is an Dvia-society, young 
men leave the Ekpo at the age 
of fifteen, but where there is 
none, as e.g. at Urho N-igbe 
[ . W L they are said to remain in 
it until they are 35 or 40 years 
of age; v. Akobis 

ekpokpo [ # '\] bullet. 

ekpooe [ # "%J thanksgiving : especi- 
ally a procession round the town 
passing all the chiefs' gates, 
made by a newly-made chief; 


mu^egbe y-ima yay-ekpaoe-re 

[.. .. .V.] § et ready that we 
may go (for a) thanksgiving 
procession to-day! c/. kpous [/]. 
ekpukpu [.'*] a dish prepared 
from cassava: the cassava is 
ground with the rough outside 
of a pierced kerosene tin, where- 
upon it is made into a ball. This 
is ground again in a mortar 
(olo ["]), mixed with water, and 
baked. Like usi [/] and igarji 
[*/], it is one of the more 
modern ways of preparing cas- 
sava; v, ebobozi [ '], eferhinye 


elayaloyo [ # , J a bell used in the 
Dxwahe [ t J .]-cult; it is of the 
same shape as egogo ["'], but 
it has a nail inside. 

elab [ "\ ] a disease: tinea; cf. lab 


elapurhu [/••] fugitive swellings in 
the arm ; itches ; due to filaria ( ?) . 
Effective medicines are said to 
be emu-ohae "ashes of a 

bachelor", and a herb called 
ebubule [../]. 

elarhelarhe [.'.'.] a disease: 
dropsy? v. owe [ m J. 

elukeluke [,/.*] a name for the 

ema i [.J general term for 
"drum"; of two drums usually 
played together the one having 
the lower tone is referred to 
as iy-ema [*\], the "mother- 
drum", the one having the 
higher tone, as ooi^ema [/..], 
the "daughter-drum". Some of 
the most important drums are : 
em-sdo [/*] "drum of Benin": 
a big round drum beaten with 
one stick during the ugie that is 
called ukpetuE [..']; the beats 
are interpreted as: gi-oy-oba se 

[""J lit. "let that of the Dba 
pass" : let the will of the Oba be 
done! em-iya [/\] a drum for 
chiefs; it is put on the ground 
and beaten with two sticks, 
especially in chiefs' houses during 
the eho [/] and during ugies 
when they are " tossing" the ebe 
[ # J, i.e. performing a sword- 
play; priests of Dxwahe [./.] 
have it as well, em-izaduma 
[.'..'] a war-drum, em-izagbede 
[//J a drum played when the 
young men (iroyae [...] and 
iyele ['..]) are dancing the 
izagbede [\'J-dance. em-uyo 
[ f\ J a small drum covered with 
hide on one side only, beaten by 
hand; a dance-drum (v. uyo [..]) 
mostly used by women. For 
other drums v. iyede [...], 

emaba [...]. 

ema 2 [ tt ] (1) yam (plant and fruit 
while on the farm); inu^ema 
ukpe-fe [***.*"] how many yams 
did you dig to-day? v. ba 2 [J], 
fa [*], kpe [*], vio [J], inya 
[/], isa [..], eka [\], eru [/], 
igbi [/], ivu [..]; red yam 
(ikpe ['.]): emile [\ J, olimehi 
[•'/], uhoboriabe [...'*], ugo 
[/J (wild); white yam (emowe 
[/J): edia n-ukpak5 [..".], 
ogigba. [."%.] (wild); red and white 
yam : erhuru [ ' * ] ; other varieties 
are: arebu [/J, olusee [ "*], 
udi [.*], igiorua [\Jl ukpu [*.]. 
(2) fufu made from yam. 

emaba [ _ J (1) a drum made from 
a calabash, with a rattle fastened 
to it; used during ugies [. .], and 
by some chiefs. (2) a dance at 
which the dancers hold this 
drum and drum on it, while 
moving forward and backward; 
cf. ema 1 [ J. 


emasini [ ' ] machine, e.g. ema- 
sini n-aya dol-ukpo [././/.] 
"machine for repairing clothes" : 

emato [/•] iron; cf. oto [..](?); 
v. ogu [/]. 

erne [ t *\] monkey; v. atugis [./], 
alazi [V*], axarho [/J, sxoxo 
["..]. °& [/I ^sa [ # J, uhip 

emehe [ J (i) bands, or crowds, 
of women acclaiming the Oba 
when he is marching through 
the town during the ugie [ # J 
called isiokuo they ex- 

claim iyare! [/J "safe arrival", 
or "welcome home". (2) emehe 
n-urjabi [".*..] carriers of the 
Oba ; they must never be seen by 
the Oba without a load on their 
heads, therefore, when he is 
near, they either put the nearest 
thing on their heads, or, they 
lean their heads against a house- 
wall, as if about to lift the 
house, asking help of passers-by : 
mu ms [/] "lift it for me" 
(Utubi [_] is a quarter of 
Uselu [ '], near Benin City); 
c/.mu □(?), ih £ [/](?). 

emiaos [_] illness; complaint; 
may be made specific by a noun 
indicating a part of the body, 
e.g. in emiau-obo loyo oe [/.'..'] 
lit. "an illness of the hand is 
paining me"; a special disease 
is emiao-uhobo [ / J lit. "Sobo- 
disease": probably ascites; v. 
uhuoova [/ "J. 

emile [' J a special kind of red 
yam the fruit of which hangs 
from a rope; cf. ema 2 [_]. 

emiowo [ ' • ] meat ; same as af aoe 


emobo [. ] a dress of the Oba's; 
not the most elaborate one. 

emosima [ /_] a kind of tortoise 
said to have been charmed by 
Oxwahs [ # J J and put in the bush 
surrounding his shrines. They 
are sacred and must not be 
caught and are even given food 
(if. e^o [_]). It is believed that 
in farm fires they remain unhurt 
because they are under a charm. 

emota [."%.] an utuhe [_'] tree 
standing on eki^oba [/"] in 
Benin City which is the seat of 
a god (?) that is worshipped. 
The Oba makes sacrifices to it, 
and any burial must pass under 
it. Cowries and chalk are then 
thrown to it as a sign of notice 
to the tree or the power mani- 
fested by it. 

emomo [."%.] loan; cf. momo [/], 

emows [/J one variety of white 
yam; cf. ema 2 [ J. 

emue[.J (1) ashes. (2) grey: of ua 
o-emus [/\] it is grey (lit. 
"white") like ashes; v. eds [/]. 

emunemune [,,/"] fire-fly. 

ens [/] four; ma ens no [./•] we 
were four of us. ene(i)r-oo-ugie 
[,"Y*] lit. "four are not in 
twenty": sixteen; en£(i)r-ou-iy- 

eva [.'V'"] "four are not in 
forty" : thirty-six; redupl. enens 
[',*] all the four; enens 
four by four; in groups of four. 

eni [/] elephant; elephant tusks 
are kept on the Oba's erha 
["]-shrine (v. also akohe [_'], 
oko [\]); eni ams [/..] hippo- 
potamus (oroboto [...'] is more 
in use); v. udia [/], ebe [/]. 

eni [.J name; eni fus 00 [..//] 
what is your name ? u-ati-eni £ue 
V..j\ "what do they call 
your name?" is more usual; cf. 
iheni [..J. 


enia [/] so; thus; cf. erio [/]. 

eniboku [//] a white bird, the 
Cattle Egret or Buff-backed 
Heron, which is considered to 
be very "senior"; its praise- 
name is eniboku oxoxo n-uhe 
[//../.] "Eniboktt, the fowl of 
Ife." They are not common at 
Benin City, but many of them 
are said to come at the time of 
the Dba's igws [_], the sacrifice 
to his head, where also one 
eniboku is included (?) ; thirty or 
fifty come to a certain tree near 
the £guae [ _ ] ; they are said to 
come from Ife. 

enita [*\] crayfish (found in 
rivers) . 

enixuxu [."..] pigeon ; it is a sym- 
bol of happy marriage ; ofotj-if a 
ye u-oy-enixuxu [.".'"*..] their 
marriage is like that of the 

enwa [ # \] now (same as eba [."%]); 
redupl. : nwanwa [ * \ ] ; enwa w ude 
L\J.] now are you coming? 

enwananwana [ * 1 flash of 

U • • • • J 

lightning, or of the reflected sun 
in a mirror; enwananwan-erhs 
[/*"..] spark from worked iron 
in a smithy (Dxw.); cf. nwana- 
nwana [ ]; v. shohaos [/'J. 

enwanie [."%.] answer; cf. nwanis 
[/]> inwaniEv5£ [....]. 

enwaos [\ J a palm-branch with 
its side branches on; enwao- 
sfiui ["**.,] (unusual tones) 
"palm-branch of efiCi [,'.]": a 
tree Dracaena sp. ; its leaves are 
like palm-leaves; when cooked 
they are used as a medicine 
against gonorrhoea ; v . exoe 2 [ ' J . 

enws [.*\] (1) (mother's) breast. 
(2) milk; enw-smila [ ' *] cow- 

enwini ['/] a drum which is 


beaten by the Ogbelaka ['/.]- 

people during ugies [_] (or at 

one particular ugie?). 
enya [ promise; cf. nya 2 [/]. 
Enyae [ t J name of a Bini village, 

seat of an Oxwah£ [ t J J -shrine; 

a market is also held there, 
enyanya [ ] yawn; cf. nyanya 


eny£ [ . ] a round fruit similar to a 

calabash; edible, 
eoms [/] "yes, my son"; used by 

old men to young men ; a short 

form for e, ooi o£ [../]. 
epiapia [/ \\ the Piping Hornbill; 

same as axw£xae [...]. 
era ["] ganglion; v. ake ["]. 
e " [ . . ] M knotty part in a piece 

of wood, or in a creeper; 

eri w erha na igiava [,"*',/,] the 

knotty part of this tree (or, 
wood) cannot be split ; v. mu 1 [ * ] . 
(2) retardation in growth (of a 
child, e.g.); v. kp£e [J]. 

eria [/] (1) grazing; cf. ria [/], re 
["]; v. rie [J]. (2) explanation 
of the code-words in the ogw£ga 
[A J-oracle. 

eriaria sandfly. 

erierk [/J a bath containing 
"medicines" taken by a man 
when about to die: somebody 
else will then die in his stead, 
while he himself will recover; 
this "substitute" may even 
come from the same family. 

erio [ ] so; thus; o-en-uru 
na, eri(o)^ayaaru lel-osi^oua 
P." ' 1 lit- "as you are 

L • • • ••••J J 

doing now, so people do follow 
their friend": you are acting 
like a real friend; u-erio ['J] 
thus; like that, 
eriri 1 ['"] a small white ants' hill 
used cLS cl food for chickens and 
forfikose [.\J; v. ulelefe [....]. 

eriri 2 [*"] drag-net; cf. Jekri 
eriri [•**]. 

ero [ / ] lodging in somebody else's 
house for want of a house of 
one's own; ero iye ['*] I am in 
lodging, or a lodger; iy-ero ["•] 
rent; v. iyo 1 [**]; cf ro ['J] t 

atuero [...]. 
eru [ / ] a rack standing on a farm, 

or, for greater safety, in the 
bush, on which the yam-harvest 
is kept. It consists of several 

main poles (utoyoto [ ] or 

uke [/]) standing at equal dis- 
tances and supported by forked 
branches (ikadsle [\~Y]), and 
between these there are smaller 
poles called oxs [ ' ] . The yams 
are tied horizontally to stripped 
palm-branches (exoe ['.]), and 
each row is called uga. [_]. The 
structure is supported by cross- 
poles, three in number, which 
are called ogba [/]. In measur- 
ing the yam-harvest, the dis- 
tance between two main poles 
is uhoho [...], half the distance 
is ekp-oxs ["•], that between 
three main poles ( = two uhoho) 

is £WS [_]. 
erha ["] father; erha Cs ['.'] m Y 
father; erha-a ['/] your father; 
erha-e ["\\ his father; erha oa 
[*/], erh-ima ["J our father; 
erh-uwa ["J your (pi.) father; 
erh-ifa [" ] their father, erha 
(5-osa "our father Osa ' ' : 

an epithet of Osa [.J. erh- 
odede ["..] grandfather; erha 
\5-odede ['.'..] my grandfather; 
also : erha tte n-oxwa [ * ] . The 
term may be specified : erh-erha 
["'] father's father; erh-iye 
[***] mother's father; v. umobo 
[...]. (2) "father" as the re- 
vered ancestor whose shrine is 

in every Bini house. (3) erha 
t3e n-agb5 ['..%.] "my father of 
this world ' ' : my lover (said by a 
woman) ; the man thus referred 
to may be quite young ; and the 
reason for this is probably that 
he is " like a father towards his 
beloved", v. iye ['*], egbaxia 
[.. ]• (4) erna n-as-agbo mie 
(sei[*]) [Y . ] "the father whom 
one reaches the world to see": 
f osterf ather, or generally, a man 
who treats a young boy like his 
father, i.e. shows kindness to 

erha [/] (1) tree; shrub; erha 
n-igb5 ya k-shi [ m ,,J'\] "the 
tree which the foreigners (or 
Ibos) take to construct (ko [']) 
their shi " : a tree, Erythrina Sene- 
gal ensis; erh-erhe [."%.] "tree 
of fire ' ' : practice of felling a tree 
by putting fire to it ; erh-ukoko 
[...] "pipe-shrub": a shrub, 
perhaps Sterculia oblonga (F.D. 
list: Okoko), from which the 
tubes of long pipes are obtained, 
erha n-oba ya kp-oti hi^edo re 
[ *] "the tree which the 

%m • • • • • J 

Dba took to take the leprosy 
away from Benin": a tree, 
same as anyaerha [ t< J (F.D. 
list : Distemonanthus bentha- 
mianus). (2) wood; stick; erh- 
eru [/*] (all the) sticks used in 
a yam-stack (eru [/]). erh-szo 
[/'] "stick of law-suit": dock; 
witness-box ; ozen-unu^sfe o- 
uw-erh-ezo [."*...****] he gave 
his statement in the witness-box 
(or, in the dock), erh-ido [/•] 
the stick to which the threads 
are fastened in a loom, 
erhe 1 [ . . ] part of palm fruit that 
joins the fruit to the tree; the 
erhe are burnt in order to obtain 


em-uxu£ [/•] palm-husk ashes; 
when burning they are called 

UXUE [/]. 

erhe 2 [ _ ] a copper stool sent by 
the Portuguese, v. L.R. p. 112 
(on p. in there is a brass copy 
of it, made by the Oba Eresonys 


erhs [ J fire; kok-erhs ni me 
[.,}'•] build up (lit. " collect, 
join", viz. the firewood) that 
fire for me. erhsbaoogo [../.] 
' ' fire is flaming on an old farm ' ' ; a 
shrub, Enantia affinis ; the wood 
is yellow inside, a feature which 
probably explains the tree being 
called "fire" (but it is not clear 
why "on an old farm"); wood 
is used for building purposes. 

erherhs [/'] a plant similar to 
ikpogi [ .~V ] with small fruit con- 
taining seeds; it is said to taste 
very pleasant when fried, and 
to cause indigestion when eaten 

erho [ * * ] craw-craw ; erh-abs [ * " ] 
"craw-craw of razor": barber's 

erhua [ '] tying one's cloth; 
cf. rhuk {J}. 

erhumohi [*\] the Dark-heeled 
Cuckoo, or, Senegal Coucal. 

erhuru [/'] a kind of yam, red 
and white; fruit a little bitter; 
is eaten a good deal by the 
Yoruba people; a medicine is 
obtained from it ensuring quick 
conception; v. ema 2 [ J. 

erhuuu [ ## J (1) prayer, Christian 
and pagan. (2) blessing; v. 
ise [ *]. 

erhuouriaria butterfly; v. 

ooi [/]. 

e t e [ .] a white bean (not from a 
shrub, like ikpexie [...]) of 
which the Yorubas make eka 

[\] (Yor. akara [...]); the Bini 
people use maize and water-yam ; 
cf. Yor. eree [• )\ 
e C« [..] W gain; profit; ere rju£ 

kpob o-et3i n-uxis na [ t m J J 

"your profit is great in this 
thing that you are selling". 
(2) reward; ere n-orhie ms 
u-ekpa ei5i n-iru ns, eror-eoa 

[./ , ..'.. , \.''>] tit- " tn e reward 
he gave me for the thing I 

did for him is what is there", 

i.e. is over there; cf. Yor. ere [_]. 

Eresonye [ " . . ] name of an Oba. 

e U £ U £ L~\.] deception (by some- 
body); cf. rere [.']. 

ero [/] cunning; deceiving; cheat- 
ing; cf. ro [/](?); v. ru [*], 
sks [/]. 

e P [..] knife; for kitchen and 
eating; ef-ulema [/_] cobbler's 
knife (cf. le ['], ema 2 [..]). 

e t u [..] placenta. 

erefe [..'] eight. 

efua [/] any harmful sbo 
(charm) destined to cause sick- 
ness and possibly containing 
poison as well; it is put into 
food, thrown at people when 
they are present, blown into the 
air when they are absent, put on 
one's path, etc; cf. fua [J]; v. 
gbe [J] xe [J]. 

esa [/] (1) side taken by some- 
body who is not concerned in a 
quarrel, palaver, etc.; d-esa 
n-uye u-d yi [,W ] " which side 
(is it that) your are in (it)? " on 
which side are you? (2) share in 
some enterprise, plot of ground, 
etc.; esa^oy-us 00 d-d [."'/] 
"your (own) share is what in 
it": what is your share in it? 
idiom.: EOE^esa it is of 

no account; it does not matter; 
n-uru na hia w it3£ w esa [.".",.%] 


''all this what you are doing is 
of no account": it does not do 
me any harm; cf. igbesa [_]. 

esabu [/\] shop; factory; same 
as ow-ski [;%.]; Engl. 

esagie [/\] blood ; same as srhas 

esago [;\] demijohn; cf. Yor. 
Jago ['•]. 

esakpaede [/'•] (i) a men's drum ; 
the iyele [* ] age-group dance 
to this drum; it is small and 
round, covered with skin on 
both ends (but not narrow in the 
middle). (2) name of the dance. 

esalebo [./•] a plant; the seeds 
are strung up and put round a 
calabash, serving as a rattle ; v. 
ukuss [" ]. 

esab [ ."Y ] a disease : small sores, 
mostly on hands and feet; re- 
sembles smallpox, but bigger in 
size ; probably tertiary syphilis. 

Esama ['/] a chief who performs 
the ama [/]-ceremony (relating 
to the Dba's children). 

esata [ # "\ ] saw ; it seems to occur 
with the prefixes a- and o- as 
well; cf Port, sierra. 

esaua [\ J any carved bone or 
ivory ; cf. igbesaoa [....]. 

ese [ # J any sacrifice ordered by 
an oracle ; " predicted sacrifice " ; 
es-osi^se y-D^-egbe [ J \J ; /] " it 
is a predicted sacrifice that has 
drawn it to his body": i.e. that 
has caused the trouble ; is often 
said as explanation of a disaster, 
bad luck, etc. that has befallen 
a man; idiom.: imu es-ogis n- 
ogie (na [']) [ "'J J] "I took 
the predicted sacrifice of Dgis 
and gave it to Ogk (a name)": 
I left it alone ;v.zo2[J] t arugbo 


eseku a. dwarf-like being, 

believed to live in the dense 
bush ; it looks like a man, but is 
covered with hair all over the 
body, including the face, so that 
its eyes are almost invisible. It 
carries a mat woven like the 
house of the worm (?) akuerha- 
kuiri [..'..], and always utters 
sounds like i i, i i ['*'*]. It is 
believed to be harmless when 
not troubled, but "if it passes 
through a man's legs, he must 
die". It cannot be killed with a 
knife, etc. because, if cut, "it 
becomes double and fourfold", 
and it is never hit by a bullet, 
but if sand is thrown at it, it 
"must pick up every grain of it 
before it can leave the spot". 
From the skull, a "medicine" is 
prepared enabling the user to 
know what happens at a dis- 
tance. Its mat which, however, 
nobody can obtain, brings " pros- 
perity in life ' ' . 
Esejje [ _ ] a chief ; senior of the 
Iw-sguae [ f\ J-society; the title 
is not hereditary, 
essyssexe [ t ] the gum-tree, 

Tetrapleura tetraptera. 
esi 1 [..] bush-pig; esi w ebo [/'•] 
"European pig": house-pig; re- 
cently introduced, same as &lsd£ 
[*%.]. esi oha [.'**] a brown rat 
found in dirty places ; used as a 
sacrificial animal by the priests 
of Ofomila [.*..]; same as ekwEmo 
['*']. esi oha [.*'*] may nowa- 
days possibly be used to dis- 
tinguish the bush-pig from the 
house-pig; cf. Yor. esi [• J; v. 
azana [...], oluku [,/]. 
esi 2 [..] good (perhaps "good- 
ness"); ooa w esi [/..] a good 
man; n-ooa w esi [*'..] the good 
man; eui^esi [/, J a good thing. 


esia [/] hail; occurs e.g. at the 
time of every heavy rainfall in 
the rainy season (orho [..]), and 
on the whole, three or four times 
in the year. 

esiasio [ /\] a bird, the Bristlebill ; 
it is said to summon all the 
birds to the bath in the morning 
and the evening; the head is 
used as a love-' 'medicine" by 
young men. 

esiga [ # /] cigarette; idiomatically 
they are also called ikpihiab- 
emila [••'••.] "Miller's finger" 
(Miller's was the first European 
store in Benin City) ; Engl. 

esikoto [/_] (also a-), grease (for 
rubbing oneself). 

esikpoyo [.'*.] the Bulbul; it has 
a curved tuft of feathers on its 
head (ugu-akpata [ t ]); said to 
have been appointed king of the 
birds (but etitibiti [..."%.] be- 
came king at last) . 

eso [/] some; eso r-owa o-ifa 
[/•/.] some of ("among") them 
are at home; redupl. eseso [."%.] 
(with negat. verb) neither ; eseso 
mare neither (of them) 

has come; also: n-ore^ir-eseso 
[ Y ] "who has come is not in 

esosomaye [."**] a charm, having 
the power of predicting, owned 
by the Oba. Some powerful 
doctors are said to own this 
charm as well, in which case it is 
not called esosomaye. 

Eso ['J] a chief, one of the most 
important members of the Eya" 
Eoo N-ore [..."]. 

Esogba ["/] a chief ; member of the 
Eyasoo N-o^e [...**]; acts for 
the lyase ['/] in his absence. 

esokisi socks; Engl. 

esosi [.\,] church; Engl. 

Esu [_] (i) a harmful deity which 
is sent by other gods, mostly by 
Ofomila [/.J, to cause trouble; 
it cannot kill a man, but leads 
him into danger, temptation, 
e.g. to break the law, and law- 
suits; it is fed ("given chop") 
in order to propitiate it, and an 
image of it is kept in a niche at 
one side of the house- or com- 
pound-gate (v. iba["J) "in order 
to keep bad things away ' ' ; the 
image is of wood, and some 
stones are added in the niche. 
(2) the Devil in the Christian 
sense of the word; cf. Yor. 

esuyusuyu [,,.\] owl; general 
term; there are four different 
kinds, which, perhaps, may have 
special names; its cry in the 
backyard means that someone 
in the house will get fever, but 
it is not considered as very 
dangerous. The owl may be a 
messenger of witches, or, a 
"strong charm watching by 
night", i.e. "a charm that is 
supervised by witchcraft"; men 
also are believed to turn into 

es(u)kur» [./Y], esuku [..*%] 
school; Engl. 

eta [/] act of talking (also of 
parrots) ; oxue na gu-eta [ t J ' ' ' ] 
this parrot can talk ("knows 
talking"); cf. ta [*], ota [/]. 

ete [ _ ] a position in the ogwega 
[ f\ , ]-divination (o.o.c.o.) ; v. 
Yor. irets [f\ J. 

etebetebe [..."] a very small in- 
sect running on the surface of 
water in rivers; cf. Jekri etebe- 
tebe [..."] (?) said to be equal 
in meaning to Bini if auif a [ . ,~Y ] . 

eteburu [ # \ ] table; Engl. 


et£ [.J (an old word) : barbarian, 
foreigner ; it denotes a man from 
a " distant country who does not 
know the law and does not re- 
cognize the Dba". 

etiafa silk; v. esada [ % ], 

(e)siliki [/.J; c/. Port, teada (?). 

etigoe, erhigoe [ heron. 

etisa [/J teacher; Engl. 

etitibiti [...*%.] a blue-black bird, 
not very big, with a lyre-shaped 
tail ; said to be the king of birds 
by the Bini people. 

eto [/] hair; eto rue ta gbe (or 
et-us [J]) [..y*-] your hair is 
very long; eto n-uke [./•] thick 
hair like that of Africans; eto 
n-imo [ <# "] light hair like that 
of white men; reddish hair; et- 
as5 [/•] "hair of night" (?): 
hair standing up on the head, 
et-if u-aro [ . " . J eye-lashes ; 
same as if u-aro [*\J; et-aro 
LY] eye-brows; et-ekia [/*] 
(male) pubic hair; et-uhe [*'•] 
(female) pubic hair, eto n-asare 
[..V.] "plaited hair": a style 
of women's hair-dressing: the 
hair is plaited in parallel rows 
along the head ; worn by young 
women; v. akegbe [ "], isaba 
[•-], okuku [./], oxogbo [/•], 
ut-eha [ ]. 

etolotolo [./.'] turkey; cf. Yor. 
tolotolo {. ) ,)\ 

etoyDtoyo [./.J cock's crest at its 
throat; etDxotoy-okpa [./"%.] 
cock's crest; cf. ogogo [..'.]. 

etuheru [.."%.] scissors; cf. Port, 

eture [ ' • ] a position in the ogwega 
[^J-divination (o.c.o.o.); cf. 

Yor. etura [/']. 
eva [/] two; eveva ['/] both; 
w-ira-veva yade tell both 

of them to come! eveva [,*\.] 

two by two; wayay-uvi-eveva 
[.."*>.] (you pi.) stand in 
double file! ete n-eva ['\,] the 
two brothers, evairoougie [/V •] 
"two are not in twenty": 

evav [ # \] or evavu [.*%.] valve, 
in cars and bicycles ; Engl. 

eve [/] weeping; am-eve [/•] 
tears; idiom.: eve n-at3-5za vi- 
oza [_ ] lit. "the weeping 
with Dza's wives wept (for) 
Oza" : crocodile's tears. Dza was 
a wicked but powerful man 
whose wives were glad when he 
died. It is used in the following 
way : yevi-oo-eve n-ao-oza vi-oza 
['.... ] don't weep croco- 
dile's tears over me ! cf. vie [']. 

eve [..] elephantiasis; there are 
three kinds of elephantiasis : ev- 
axwaxwa^i [/..'] (the small 
size), eve n-uko [./*]" calabash- 
e." (the big size), and eve 
leyolere [//.J "elephantiasis- 
run-go-run come": a fugitive 
variety of the disease, said to be 
the most serious one ; it is stated 
to kill the patient gradually ; if 
somebody has died from it, the 
swelling is quickly removed, be- 
fore it disappears again, for there 
is a belief that otherwise it may 
follow the man into his next re- 
incarnation. Reincarnated men 
may be recognized by their 
having this disease, and it is 
believed that it does not kill a 
man a second time; v. uxuou 


eve [ t ] wrestling; cf. ve i ["]; v. 

yagbe [/]. 
evie ["] anvil consisting of iron 

fixed on wood; also okuta [."]. 
evuato [ mm J or possibly [ * * * ] an 

animal, perhaps a rodent; pos- 


sibly identical with the one 
called " cutting-grass" ; said to 
have come during the last de- 
cades from the grass country; 
N.W.Th. "badger"; c/.ato [.%]. 
evue ["] a kind of ant that is 
found on corpses. 

eua L^v] there; eoa osse 

there it ends (used at the end of 
stories); v. (e)o i. 

ev-a-; cf. (e)o- 3. 

evaua and ebaba [ # / ] (my) father ; 
used as an address; cf Yor. 
baba [J]. ^ 

et)-ibi-omo [/*"*] parents. 

evoxo [."%.] "rice-cake"; izsf'Jis 
used as well, which is, at the 
same time, the name of the 
"native rice"; the word is 
mostly used by sellers when 
praising their merchandise ; 
doha^eooxoo [J * ] or, in an 
older form which 'is dying out, 
yoha w euoxoo (in the pi. 

wa- [ J is prefixed) . 

euo [/] scabies. 

euu [ *\] (1) mist. (2) a woman's 

e ^ a L\l here; v. (e)o- 1. 

eoaoa [,"\.] a man who con- 
tinuously looks at himself in 
order to see whether his clothes 
fit; cf. vava. [/]. 

evevz [/J madness; e{3st5-5f£ do 

y°"U e [..J. /J.] <<n is madness 
was quenched to-day" : he has a 
lucid interval; cf. oueos [/J. 
em ' [.W thing; something; with 
negative verb : nothing ; omarhi- 
evi ne [*\,J'*X] he gave him 
nothing. For "nothing", et3i 
rhokpa [/_] is used as well: 
omarhi-eoi rhokpa ns [* \ ' m J'\] 
he gave him nothing; e\3i da 
[J,] "bad thing": evil (Bibl.); 
eoikeui [,J,^\] everything ; any- 

thing, eui n-abaku ru [./'.'] 
"things which have been done 
by mistake" : mistake. et5i n-ale 
[.,/] " things that are cooked " : 
cooking (ileoi [ ## J is not pos- 
sible), em n-amomos [./.^v] 
"things that have been lent": 
loan (also eo-amomos [."."%]. 
em n-exwa [_'J "the great 
things": (a) the burial of an 
Dba; (b) witches; idiom.: et5i ve 
[./] "my child" (wife, servant). 
Followed by genitives: eoi^eho 
[."*] ear-rings; more used than 
orok-eho [ /•]; eui^exue [/..] 
"things of shame": disgrace; 
v. ru [*]; eo-igbina [."%..] 
weapon, lit. "thing of fight"; 
et3-iri [/•] "thing of rope": an 
animal given to a man to be 
taken care of ; or possibly simply 
' ' domestic animal ' ' ; eoi^oko 
[,",] seed; (oko [*J is not used 
alone); em^orho [/_] harvest; 
em r-ebo [/'•] "thing of Euro- 
peans" (?): plate (1 is not nasa- 
lized) ; et3i w ugati£ [.">.]" things 
of service ' ' : bride-wealth ; 
"dowry"; eoi w uwawa [.'...] 

palm-oil chop (v. op£X£rh£ [ ]). 

In the following cases, the con- 
struction seems to be a short 
relative sentence without the 
particle n-: et5i fi [ '] "thing 
that attacks": small-pox; em 
gb-eni [,"*], "thing that has 
killed elephant" : toothache (not 
when cutting teeth); e\5i r-ako 
[..'.] "thing that is in the 
tooth" : toothache (with children 
when cutting teeth) ; eoi r-a[o 
[./J " thing that is in the eye" : 
yellow fever (? ; also eu-ir-aro?) ; 
et3i r-ob-£tx> [."•".] "things that 
are in the Oba's country": an 
age-group consisting of the boys 


of 6-12 years; they sweep the 
streets, or, in a village that is 
very populated they carry refuse 
away; eui r-unu [./*] toothache 
(notwhen cutting teeth) ; v. (e)d-. 

euidate [ "\ ] stinginess (Akugbe) ; 
cf. e(5i \S\> da i [']. 

ewa i [.'] sleeping-mat made out 
of the sticks of ebi^eba [.""]. 

ewa 2 [/] act of giving food to 
witches as done by witch- 
doctors at a witches' meeting- 
place ; slaughtering included ; cf. 

wa i [J]; v. izobo [."%.]. 
ewawa [ _ J a method of divina- 
tion practised by the Osu [/] 
priests: small images of human 
beings and animals, cowries, 
chalk, charcoal, and a model of 
a canoe are put on a drum. A 
chewed kolanut is spat on to it, 
whereupon the images are put 
into a cup and thrown on the 
drum again. The resulting ar- 
rangements of images are then 
analysed. If e.g. the image of a 
sick man falls into the "canoe", 
somebody will die. The image 
of a goat e.g. resting in the 
" canoe" points to the sacrifice 
of a goat required for some pur- 
pose, e.g. for curing an illness. 

v. obo [/]. 
ewi [ " ] a fish yielding much meat ; 

v. ekpalakpala [..."]. 
(e)windo, (e)winda [/J window; 


ewisiki, enwisiki [/ ] whisky, 
ewoe i ['W whistling (with 
mouth) . 

ewoe 2 ['%] larva of a fly found 
on mud-couches ; produces itch- 
ing and craw-craw ; it is believed 
to be attracted by the urine of 
children who sleep there; v. 
ahiewoe [...]. 

ewua ["\] (i) act of waking the 
Oba by a shout similar to a cock's 
crow. (2) name of the "gang" 
(band) whose task it is to wake 
the Oba. The office was created 
by the Dba Ssigie [' * J, therefore 
all the members of the ewua 
l"X] wear a cross. Their leader 
is the Ohu-Dba ['."], and "to 
wake the Oba" is ki-ewua [ *\] 
(kie [J]). 

exae [J (1) sand. (2) powder; 
exa-osisi [ ] gun-powder ; re- 
dupl. : exexae ['*.], e.g. in 
ods na ru^exexae [.*."*.] this 
road is sandy, lit. "makes sand- 
sand"; v. ebubs [...], eke [ J. 

exarha [.%.] repetition; exarh- 
uxui3u [.'*..] (or exarh-sbo 
[. *>]) " repetition of medicines, 
charms": magic formula; spell; 
cf. xarha [/]. 

exarha [.J umbrella, also 
ugbinams [ . . . J . 

exerhe [/'] (1) small; little; owa 
n-exerhe [.."•'] the small house; 
owa na y-exerhe [.*.'"] this 
house is a small one. (2) a little ; 
v. e.g. the Bini title of Egh. 
Hist. "Ekherhe vbe ebe itan 
8do" "a little from the book of 
stories of Benin": a little about 
the history of Benin; cf. xerhe 


Exirhi Bini-name for the 

Ekiti country. 

exoe 1 [*.] (1) mind; character; 
k-exoek-exoe ['J \] with all 
one's mind (Akugbe) ; uoe-xoe da 

V.J J.] y° u nave a bdi& cha- 
racter. (2) will; v. egbe [/]. 

exoe 2 [*J palm-branch with its 
leaves removed; used for tying 
yams; v. enwat5s ['..]. 

exue [ m J shame ; exue mu i5e [, % /] 
I am ashamed. 


exue [ t \] the remnants, ashes, of 
a farm-fire ; they must be burnt 
once again; of. xue [J], 

exuoxuD, exwDxwo [\ J a rat trap. 

exwae [\] a group of charms of 
oval shape, made of a pounded 
medicine " that has been mixed 
with water or, when making a 
"stronger" exwae, with coco- 
nut milk or blood. Those 
"stronger" exwaes must not be 
made in one's house (in the 
e S u ['.]) but in the bush. The 
exwae is usually kept in the egu, 
i.e. the apartment where one's 
Osu [/] stands; in that case it is 
used to "push" one's enemies 
into danger (v. sua [J]), and 
also in cursing and blessing. In 
other cases it stands under a 
small thatched shelter outside 
the wall of the compound; those 
exwaes are of a "stronger" 
nature: they are called exwae 
n-odiooa ['.*..] "main exwae", 
lit. "exwae that is senior to 
man", and they give strength to 
the particular god whom the 
owner of the exwae follows. 
Others are found in the shrines 
of gods; they are given the 
blood of sacrifices (v. wa [J]', 
owaiss [...]). Possibly the 
exwaes always have some rela- 
tion to the Osu [/]; they are 
also said to be "moving with 
witches", and, therefore, the 
witch-doctor holds an exwae 
when "giving chop to witch- 
craft " in order that it may com- 
municate with the witches and 
tell them that they are given 
food. A curse is: exwaa (exwae 
o-) sua rue ['../J "may exwae 

push you";?;, asua [/], sbo [/\]. 
exwe [ ' * ] (i) tomato. (2) garden-egg. 

exwexws [/•] palm-wine; drinks 
obtained from the oil-palm; the 
tree must be cut down in order 
to obtain it ; exwexws^ogb-us £a 
[.*' .J ,] are you drunk from 
exwsxws? (to somebody who 
acts foolishly, or, like a drunken 
man); v. udegboto ['.'.], ago [..]. 

exwi [ , J the Scaly Ant-eater. 

exworho [' ] swamp; cf. Yor. 
kpoto-kpoto [.,".] slush. 

eyaya 1 [_J nonsense; ot-si5- 
eyaya (ta [*]) [/'..] he talked 

eyaya 2 [..J gap or ubka [..J, 
while unmixed with liquids. 

eyaya [.\.] disregard; lack of 
respect toward senior people ; cf. 

Eyeds [ / ' ] a sib (that of the lyase 
n-ohsuE ["/*>.]); the morning 
greeting is la-yeds o ['"•]; 
v. egbee [."%]. ^ 

eyeye [_'] praising appellation of 
a woman who has many chil- 
dren; v. iyeye [""]. 

e y £ [. ] grandchild; eys n-okpia 
[ . ."V ] grandson ; eys n oxuo 
[.."%.] granddaughter; v. iwu 
[,.], ihishis ['/], sakpaf£-yodi 
[ . \.]> yabiona [".]. 

ezs [/] a chisel-like blade used 
by wine-tappers. 

ezsgizsgi [ m ] dysentery; v. zko 
[."%]; of Yor. origin. 

ezikE ["J a musical instrument 
made of a long, thin calabash 
(a flute); it is played by the 
Ikpezikg [....] during ugies [.J 
for the Dba and a few chiefs. 

Ezima [""] the senior chief at 
Uh§ [J; he is said to have been 
the first Bini man to grow oil 
palms, and therefore he is the 
"owner" of all the oil palms of 
the country though this pro- 

bably does not mean practical 
ownership; he used to bring a 
human sacrifice to the palm 
tree once a year, the sacrifice 
being performed at one palm 
tree at Uh£ which is supposed to 
stand on the spot where the first 
palm tree grew (or to be the 
same tree?). A praise-name is 
Ezima n-uhe n-okp-ema ri^awo 
[ 7.V...'] "Ezima of Uhs who 
has beaten the drum to eat awo " 

[ = obobo ['/]). 

ezo [/] a repair, a defective place 
made good; ezo na gi [//] this 
repair leaks; cf. zo 2 [)']. 

Ezomo [ * ' * ] a chief, the highest in 
rank after the Dba; lives at 
Uzsbu [*/], a quarter of Benin 
City where he seems to enjoy 
sovereign rights to a greater 
extent than any other ruler in 
the Bini country; in former 
times the inhabitants of Uzebu 
are even said to have seized men 
from Benin City ; he is the head 
of the egi-esa [/'J sib {cf. ogie 
[ ] "ruler" and esa [\] 
"Ishan"), and the Ezomos are 
said to have been rulers of Ishan 
once upon a time (though not 
the first Ezomos) ; his messengers 
are, or were, until a short time 
ago, much respected in some 
parts of the Ishan country. He 
is considered to be the first war- 
chief of the Binis, and as such 
has the most powerful charms. 
Every morning he sits on his 
dais, calling down evil on the 
enemies of Benin. The title is 
hereditary; by Europeans he 
is called Ojomo. A praise-name 
is Ezomo N-uti ["/J; cf. Yor. 
ojomo or ojomo [•"•]. 

Ezoti [/•] name of an Oba. 

8 L/] 3rd pers. sgl. in negative 

e [ * ] yes (as reply to a question) . 

sbe L\] M danger. (2) harm. 

sbete [ * \ ] a very fat, brown bush- 
rat, living mostly in dust-heaps 
near the town; same as ekwsmo 
['"]; also called esi-oha [/•] 
" bush-hog" . It is sacrificed to 
Ofomila [/.J, together with fish. 

ebs 1 [ _ ] a ceremonial sword worn 
by chiefs; it does not show as 
high a rank as the ada [ " ] ; cf. 
gb-ebs ['J. 

ebe 2 [ ] a tree, found near water, 
Mitragyna macrophylla; planks 
are used to build ceilings. 

8bi n-uroyo [\\ J a praise-name 
of the war-chief Edogu [/']; v. 
Abigggs [*/']. 

sbo [ ' J a kind of sedge growing on 
river banks; the leaves have 
saw-like edges; used by women 
to make a kind of mat (aterhu 
[/.]) and bags. 

£bo L^v] an Y charm of powdery 
substance with which people 
wash themselves (kpe [']) or rub 
their foreheads or chests. The 
substance is fried and ground 
when being prepared. Mostly of 
noxious character, but also for 
preventing diseases and bad 
luck; £b- £ rhia [/J "spoiling 
charm": harmfui charm; £b- 
iloue [ \ J charm enabling a man 
to have intercourse with a 
woman without her knowledge ; 
£b-ozioi£ [."VJ charm used by 
thieves; it makes the place 
where they are going to steal 
deserted; v. asua [/], efua [/]. 

Sbomisi [ * * ] name of a Bini deity 
(an ihg [."%]) who transformed 
himself into a hill after Dxwahe 
[.J.] had become a river. 

Ebo [ # J (i) any sacred object that 
has been instituted by man and 
not by a god himself, in contrast 
to ihg [ %]. (2) a general term 
for " god, deity " ; cf Yor. bo [ • ] ; 

V. tU ['], V£2 [•]. 

£boh5 [_'] an okakuo [.'}]: 
warrior-chief, with Elogboss [//] 
under Ezomo [ * " ] . 

sbu [ " ] temporary resting-place, 
e.g. in travelling, or for hunters, 
the place whence one sets out 
and returns to roast one's meal; 
for farmers, the rest-place during 
the period when the farm is 
cleared and no oxogbo [/"] has 
yet been put up. 

ebubu [\J a depression in the 
roofs of Bini houses, intended 
for leading the rain-water to the 

Sbue [ # J name of a Bini village, 
eda [ ] leucorrhoea; cf Yor. sda 

ede [ ] native crown ; sd-ivie [ * ] 
bead-cap; same as srhu w ivie 
[/'•]; cf. Yor. ade [•*]. 

ed e [.'] W day; £<le ni [" V] tnat 
day; then; refers to the past 

only. With numbers, e.g. ede-ha- 
t e [..J.] s i x days from to-day; 
Ede-hij; 5-re [...J .] a week from 
to-day; edE-fuuafE-rs 

eight days from to-day; sds- 

kiasugi-Er£ [ \] fifteen days 

hence ; but with a different tone 
in the prefix: £ds-ha ["/] three 
days' time; ed-snE [*/] four 
days' time; £d£-ha [*\] six 
days' time; Eds-hip [\\] a 
week's time; Ed£-fut5af£ ['../] 
eight days' time; £d£-gbe ['/] 
ten days' time; £d£-kiasugie 
[Y. ] fifteen days' time, with 
the exception of £d-eva [/•] 
"two days' time" and the form 

£de-f£f£ [//] for the more fre- 
quent EdE-fuuafE. £d-£ki 
market-day. The days of the 
Bini market week are: 1st, £d- 
Eki^oba [/"•] "day of Benin 
central market"; 2nd, £d-£k- 

ig° [. "*>] "day of Igo-mar- 
ket (?) " — this day is also called 
Ed-ek£ n-aka [//.], Ht. "small (?) 
rest-day", i.e. the day between 
two rest-days; 3rd, £d-£ki w adob 
[/••/] "day of the Adob- 
market"; 4th, Ed-ekg [/*] rest- 
day; originally the rest-day of 
the DxwahE [ m J .] -priests (only ? ) , 
now all over the country. On 
£d-ek£, the witches are supposed 
to have their meetings. The day 
is also called Ed-£ki w Enya£ [/**.] 
"day of the EnyaE-market". 
Some expressions for days of the 
European week that are used by 
old people only: Monday, £d£ 

n-asu£ nwina o-uzola [ */] 

"the day one starts to work in 
the week", or ad-uzol-£d£gbe 
[.*. '>] "week is finished at 
daybreak" (the verb is do); 
Tuesday, kp£d-e va o-uzola ['*.*.'] 
"two days in the week"; cf 
ikp£d£ [.**]; Wednesday, £d£ n- 

awa w inwin-eva [ ' * ] " the 

day which divides work into 
two" (wa [J]). For the other 
days v. iraxwE ["J, axw£ [\], 
uzola ['.']. Idiom.: Eds n-aw- 
eri-£d£ ye [.."•*/] ''the day 
when it is said: so the day is": 
the day when an Oba's death is 
announced by the IyasE [*/], 
i.e. three years after his death. 
£d£ is used as subject in several 
cases where in English the im- 
personal pronoun "it" is used, 
e.g. £d£ mu [ t '\] "it is dark"; 
v. also ota [.J, hiihii [_], and 

nwa 2 [/], gbe 3 f]. (2) before 
(found in a negative sentence) ; 
eui uerio masunu ede [ _ 'J' . . /%] 
such a thing never happened 
before. (3) preceding (e)ne [%] 
adds the idea of "before", 
"ago", e.g. n-ede-so [\ # J, [\J 
(a) some days ago; the other 
day; v. eye [. J; imi-ebe n-ede-so 
177..] I had a letter the other 
day; (b) last time; n-ede-so 
n-ima nami-egbe, er.-iyis-edij;a se 
[ ...J.. 77.'] lit. "last time 
when we met each other it was 
(that) I reached this place last " ; 
I have never been here since we 
met last time. v. (e)d-. 
ededeoede [ / \ J never (with nega- 
tive verb). 

edegbedegbe [.**•,] every day; 
daily; of. ede [/], edegbegbe 


edegbegbe [/• /] every day; daily; 
of. ede [/], edegbedegbe [/'• J. 

edi [/] palm-nuts (collective); 
uhuo-edl [//] bunch of palm- 
nuts; ikp-edi [/•] are single 
nuts; edi-ebo [/'•] "European 
palm-nuts" : pineapples; of. Yor. 

Sdo [ # ] Benin. 

edogbo [/J neighbourhood ; neigh- 
bours (collectively); e6-edogbo 
158 no [.*..** ] they are my neigh- 
bours ("people of neighbour- 

edu [\] a tree, "bitter kola"; 
Garcinia kola; edible; with 
round, not oval, pods. It is 
sacrificed to Shango (the Yoruba 
god of thunder) ; edu-eni [ * ' • ] 
"Elephant's bitter kola", Penta- 
desma butyracea ; was not known 
to the informant. 

Sfae[.\] name of Ogu [/] in his 
quality as god of hunting ; thus 

called by hunters and warriors 
they keep the skulls of all their 
trophies on his shrine and take 
all their weapons to the shrine 
when they sacrifice. When sacri- 
ficial meat is shared the biggest 
share is given to the man who 
had the greatest success in 
hunting, without regard to 
seniority. A hunter's shrine is in 
the Ogu [/]-room of every head 
man of a clan (oka egbee [ / ' \]) 
v. okahuuu [ ]. 

s * e [..] wealth; ef-ere kpolo gbe 
[.),''} his wealth is great. 

efua[*J whiteness; of. fuofua [/], 
ufua [/]. 

egiegie [/•] quickness; used after 
a verb in the meaning of 
"quickly": yad-egiegie n-idogi- 
D^(u)hu(3u xari-esabu (de [J], 

gie [']) [7V7.7.Y] lit. 

"come quickly that I may come 
(and) send you on an errand to 
go to the shop"; onwina^egiegie 
[....'*] he (always) works quick 
ly; egiegie [/•] be quick! of 
giegie [J']. 

egio ["] one-stringed native 
musical instrument in the form 
of a bow ; put to the mouth and 
played with two sticks. 

egogo ["'] (1) bell; irakp-egogo 
(kpe U~\) [.'J"] I am going to 
ring a bell. (2) clock, watch. 
(3) hour; omudia y-egog-okpa 
[ /. ] he waited an hour ; egog 
en-otu (ene ["Y ], otu . [' \]) ['"'\ 
it has struck four o'clock; of 
Yor. agogo [•••]. 

egu ['J bathroom of Bini house, 
where the owner's Osu [ / ] is kept. 

Sguae [ # J Oba's residence a 
Benin City. 

egwa [\] a creeper, Hippocarpu 
spec. nov. ; used for tying yams 



to yam-poles, rafters, etc. in 
house building. 

sgwe [/] hoe; gu i3s hu^sgws n- 
iyaya gb-ij;uou [.'.../"..] lit. 
"help me to find a hoe that I 
shall take to clean the grass"; 
(hu w is a real low tone here, 
but" with a slight fall in hu w 
the sentence would mean "let 
me find. . . "). 

egws i [' ' ] a bat, living in houses, 
smaller than owd [.J. 

Egws 2 ['"] a rattle, made out of 
the long leaves of the urua [ t J 
palm, which are twisted into a 
chain of small receptacles con- 
taining a few esal-ebo [..'*]- 
grains each; worn round the 
ankle by Ovia [/]-dancers. 
£gu-abo [*'*] an obsolete, or at 
least idiomatic word for " bead- 
armlet' ' (coral or other beads) 
as worn by women and children ; 
nowadays ivi-abo [.*'*] is mostly 
used. £gu-aw£ f\]an obsolete 
word for "bead-anklet"; same 

as ivi-aw£ [.'..]. 
£gba [' J armlet, of iron or brass; 
also leather armlet on which 
charms have been sewn; the 
charms are intended to give the 
bearer strength, e.g. to a woman 
in a difficult case of childbirth ; 
cf. Yor. £gba [ . . ] . 

egt> e [..] a quick dancing step, 
accompanied by quick singing 
and drumming. 

8gbenDgbifie [....'] " killer that 
kills the cleared bush" : a strong 
harmattan wind blowing from 
noon until about four o'clock; 
cold, with clouds of mist. 
•£gb£di [./] large oil barrel, hogs- 

£gb£e [.J widow. 

egbee [/\] sib; patrilineal, exo- 

gamous; liaison other than by 
marriage, if begun without 
knowledge of the relationship of 
the partners, must be purified 
by a sacrifice to erha ["], the 
ancestors. The members of the 
£gb£e have a particular morning 
greeting (v. la 3 [']), also a 
special taboo (v. awua [.J), and 
a senior (oka w £gb£e [,"\]) who 
must live in Benin City (or have 
a representative there) ; v. utile 
["], £wae [.J, Umogu [".'], 
Umosu [*/], Egi-esa [/'.], Ogi- 

efa [/..], Igfi [/], Oyetu [VL 
Uh£ [" ], Iso [ ], Egi-enwa 
[ '], Eyed£ [ 'J, IduO-ioi^oto 

[;;..], hAjut I". I UpH5[VL 

Isi£i5£ro [....], Dbo [.'], Umodu 
[".], Ogiat3£ [./]. 

8gb£ka ['*•] name of an Oba. 

Egbde 1 [..'] small piece of em- 
broidered cloth worn round the 
waist by people attending ugie 


egbde 2 [./] an idiomatic word 
for suicide; v. z£ 1 [']. 

Egbima [\ J house wall put up in 
the Jekri way, with bundles of 
sticks and canes; may then be 

e gbo ["] (a) forest; thick bush; 
(b) distance; inu w £gb-ok-eoa ya 
s-£do (ke [*], s£[']) [ \J.\] 
how far (how much distance) is 
it from here to Benin? cf. ugbo 
['•]; Yor. igbo [•']. 

£gbosi[...] unripe palm-nut bunch , 
(not yet containing any kernels) . 

syele ['..] a man belonging to 
the iyele (pi.) age-group, ca. from 
30 to 50 years of age; they 
used to serve during wars and do 
carriers' work ; they still help in 
house building and fell trees on 
the farms of the most important 


edi5 [/] (only occasionally, on 
big farms) . 

eye [/] small yam-pole. 

eye [..] time; sys hia [./] always; 
£ Y £ ni [,JJ] at that time, then; 
eysikEys and keyeikeye 
every time ; eye na [ . J J at this 
time, now; n-sy-Ed-ia [*^J 
three days ago (cf. ede [/], eria 
[/]); n-ey-£d-£n£ [' \ J four days 
ago (c/. £d£ [/], en £ [/]); v. 
(e)ne [\], (e)d-. 

Eyodi [\ J African black kite, and, 
black-shouldered kite; this kite 
is often found near farm fires, 
and there is a story that it is a 
transformed man who cannot be- 
come a human being again be- 
cause his charm has been burnt in 
a farm fire ; cf. Yor. awodi [ 1 . 

Eyodo [ J impluvium, same as 
ukpafg [.*.]; £yod-£ri£ ["/] im- 
pluvium in the women's apart- 
ment; eyod-iku [* \\| implu- 
vium in the ika The room 
containing the £yod-£ri£ is not an 
iku; it is long, while the ikus 
are square. 

£yo£ [.J a tree, Terminalia su- 
perba; used as firewood only. 
The F.D. list contains another 
tree, £yo£ n-ebi [ •] "dark 
epg", Terminalia ivorensis. This 
distinction was not made by my 

eyuyu [/Y] " bush-crocodile the 
small sort of crocodile that 
lives in swampy water; eyuyu 
na wu t)-ob-okpa keo-ow-okpa 
[.V. this crocodile is 
paralysed on one side, lit. "died 
in one hand and one foot". They 
are believed to be paralysed, and 
therefore their bones are useful 
as a charm that keeps thieves 
from stealing. 


eyute a dance, danced at 

an ugie [ ]. 
£ha [\] buffalo; cf Yor. ef5 [• J. 
£hae [ # # ] forehead, 
fihexue [/J green pigeon, Vinago 


£ns [..] yam-heap. 

£n£ [.~\] y es ( as re piy to a 

question) . 

£m [ . . ] (*) one's personal guardian 
spirit; £hi is believed to live in 
the £fiCi [/J; it "prays in e£iCi 
for our long life", and it is also 
responsible for any lucky or 
unlucky happenings. It is be- 
lieved to be " with a man all the 
day", and at night it gives 
account to Osa [_]. The £hi is 
represented by an object near a 
man's sleeping-place; the com- 
position of this substitute seems 
to vary according to the sib to 
which the owner belongs. The 
£hi does not want any blood 
sacrifices. Uhuuu [/ J, the head, 
is believed to be the ehi's helper 
and to render account of the 
happenings during the day to 
it; ob-£hi no [//] it is the £hi's 
work (lit. "hand"): this is said 
whenever a man has achieved 
anything extraordinary, or has 
had outstanding luck. (2) £hi w 
oba [/"] title of a chief, lit. 
"the Dba's ehi"; he is chosen 
by divination to be the repre- 
sentative of the Dba's £hi, and 
his main qualification is that the 
oracle must have pronounced 
him to grow very old. He has 
great privileges, e.g. he can say 
anything he likes to the Oba 
without committing any offence. 
Formerly, he had to die when 
the Dba died; v. egi-egbe [."*]. 
(3) £hi n-oha [./*] lit. "bush- 


ehi": echo; there seems to have 
been a belief that the ehi n-oha 
actually was a spirit that re- 
peated one's words. (4) shi 
n-axoe [./.] region at the back 
of the head ; the hole is explained 
by the belief that during his 
stay in efiCi [..] a man has to 
pay something for his food, and 
that a part of his skull is cut 
out in order to serve as a 
payment; cf. hi [*]. 
shis [/] (1) native pepper; ehie 
nexwa [./.] "big pepper" (pi.) : 
a special sort, see also ikpoouxo 
[ *• ] and akpoko ["*]; shi-sdo 
[;*•] lit. "pepper of Benin": 
the so-called " alligator-pepper " ; 
£hi-egbo [/"] "pepper of for- 
est", a tree, Lonchocarpus grif- 
fonianus, only used for build- 
ing oxogbo [/"]. (2) pepper- 
soup; ehie saos y-oo-ato [///.] 
pepper-soup has splashed into 
my eye. 

diihi [.*%.] a very small black ant, 
found in the house. 

sho [/] (1) throat. (2) voice; sho 
ete la gbe [..*/'] his voice 
sounds much (i.e carries far; 
said of a falsetto voice). 

shohaoe [/ • J (cold) scales of iron 
beaten off by the smith ; enwa ~ 
nanwan-erhs [..*..] sparks. 

ehoho [.""%.] wind ; ehoh-eziza [.*'..] 

Ehu [/] hollow spaces in trees 
(caused by insects) that are still 
covered with bark ; shu-ogo [ / _ ] 
(ogo old farm) a tree, Trema 
guineense, mostly found on old 
farms; it has very soft wood, 
which is perhaps the reason of 
its being called shu, and is not 
used for any purpose. 

ska [/] a position in the ogwega 

[ A .]-divination (c.o.c.c.) ; cf. 

Yor. ika [.']. 
ska [/] bright red or yellow 

beads, called agate-beads ; round 

or cornered, 
skete [ * * * ] throne (of the Dba) . 
sks [/] cunning; deception by 

hiding one's faults (an old word 

equivalent to eto [,']); occurs in 

an Oxwahs [ . A ] song. 
Skshua [/'] name of a Bini 


ski [ _ ] market ; ski w oba [/*']" the 
Oba's market", the central 
market in Benin City ; ski w adob 
[/*/]" Adob's market ",12 miles 
from Benin City on the Ifo 
Road; ski^enyas [.'..] "the 
market of Enyas", 7 miles from 
Benin City, on the Eho Road; 
v. sde [/]. 

EkitE ['.'] frog. 

Ski w ugbo [.""] lit. "farm-mar- 
ket (?) " : name of a Bini village, 
where Oxwahs [./.] is believed 
to have transformed himself into 
the river bearing the same name. 

Eko [,\] belly; £ko v5 Ce [/••] 
I am satisfied (vo [ * ] to be full) ; 
dv5 o-£ko [ ' \j I am satisfied 
(vd [J] to fill) ; Eko xd ue [//] it 
grieves me; Eko xia ue [.*.'], £ko 
bvo oe [.*. .'] my stomach pains 
me; Eko hihiE Ce [.'..*] I have 
diarrhoea; Eko rhigrhiE i5£ [.'..*] 
I am pleased; £ko ria£a 6e [.".."] 
I am displeased (negative of the 
preceding is more used); £ko 
bab vs [.'..'] it grieves me; Eko 
luyu Ce [.*.'*] I have indiges- 
tion. Eko n-ami-Dt-eCi [ *\] 

"belly where one sees its thing" 
viz. discharge; dysentery (£- is 
not nasalised). Eko asa [."'] 
"belly of shield": a spot where 
all dangers concentrate, so that 


escape is impossible; okuo yize- 
baba, if a keyite fi eko w asa 

J' '....*'*] "when the war 
had been raging ('hard') for 
some time, they (then) ran into 
a place from which there was 
no escape". 

ekokodu heart (idiom, for 

okadi [J']). 

skose (i) a spirit roaming 

about in the bush which causes 
bad luck and lack of will-power. 
Everybody has a personal ekose. 
The skose is given sacrifices con- 
sisting of a small basket (agba 
[/]) full of small anthills 

(ulelefe [ ]). (2) a man's 

worst enemy, e.g. in a, ekos-st;- 

uxi ra [*.V."Y] oh > are y°u 
his enemy? 

sko [/] Yoruba word for Bini 
akasa [..']; now in general use, 
but with a special meaning, de- 
noting the food when prepared 
quickly for children or sick 
people ; cf. Yor. eka [.•]. 

eku [/] (1) waist. (2) sku w oxuo 
[/_] women's big cloth. (3) base 
of a tree. 

£ku£ [/] (1) the town of Akure 
in Ondo-province ; the Akure- 
people. (2) a general name for 
the Yoruba people ; Yoruba 
is also used. 

ekwe [/] palm-branches, woven 
together to serve as ridge (okpo 
[ ']) of the roof. 

ekpede [/'] cross-bow. 

skp- [*] huge, big; e.g. in skp-sho 
[ " * ] a loud bass voice ; skp-iku 
[ * . ] layers of dry leaves. 

skpere [ . ""V ] a musical instrument, 
apparently a horn, producing 
high sounds; ekpefoxws [/'J 
a blue-black bird, the size of a 
pigeon ; N.W.Th. : glossy starling. 

ekps [ ] leopard; skps n-owa 
[ # ; •] " leopard of the house" is 
a" title used by chiefs in ad- 
dressing the Dba. 

skpiro [\ J a tree, Chrysophyllum 
africanum, its fruit is edible and 
a kind of otie ['*]. 

skpo ["] (1) space; skpo na o£ s£ 
[**/•] this space is wide enough ; 
skp-iyeke ["%..] middle space 
between shoulder-blades ; skp- 
oxs [ " * ] half space between two 
main poles (utoyoto [....]) of 
eru [ ']. (2) time; £kpo ni 
[•y],*£kpo rio [".] (at) that 

£kpo [*.] bag;*£kp-urhu [".] air- 
pipe; £kp-ahio [*'*] bladder; 
£kp-ekia ["'] region of pubic 
hair (male) ; Ekp-ofi [•'•]" a bag 
of yaws" : a sufferer from yaws; 

yaws- daddy"; £kp-uhe ["'] 
region of pubic hair (female). 

£kpohumi [...J headache; cf. 
kpe [J], utiuuu [/.]. 

Ekpoki [ " ] leather-box ; cf. £kpo 

£kponiy£k£ [.%..] a woman with 

Ekpowa ["'] gecko. 
Ekpoxurhu ["..] stomach; cf. 

£k P [•.](?). 

Ekpoyoe [' .W a tree, Berhma 
heudelotiana ; the bark is used as 
a medicine, but if not well pre- 
pared it is a deadly poison. It 
was also used in the Oba's ordeal, 
mixed with sasswood (inyi ['.]). 
The name also corresponds to 
Berlinia auriculata on the F.D. 
list; £kpo*o-sz£ ['/..] Macro- 
lobium limb a. 

£kd£ [ * \. ] (also e-) house-pig ; not 
known in ancient times; also: 
esi-ebo [ / * * ] " European pig " ; 
cf Yor. dsdfi [•".]. 


du ['J] interjection used to en- 
courage boxers. 

slu [/] (i) a tree, the leaves and 
root of which contain a dark- 
blue dye. (2) the dye ; it is used 
by boys to imitate the tribal 
body marks; the dye obtained 
from the burnt roots is used to 
dye the real tribal marks. 

slubo [ /] flour. 

Sma [,\\ name of a Bini village. 

smila [*/] cow; emil-ogiso [*.*.*] 
a green caterpillar; emil-ovia 
['/•] practice of twirling the bull 
roarer at the Dvia-society, in 
order to warn passers-by that 
secret things art going on ; the 
bull roaring was believed to be 
the voice of the god himself. 

smunomuerha [ '] " catcher 

L • • • • J 

who catches trees": a creeper 
Begonia manii, found on trees. 

snwe [ 4 J wound. 

snwinwa ["*'] (1) dog- tick. (2) 
same as ekaikai [/'] a disease. 
(3) a tree, Larmea acidissima. 

snyae [ J albino ; oyaru rhurhurhu 
o-snyas [.**•/' . ] he is staggering 
like an albino (who cannot see 
well during the day). 

enyas neck; used of men and 
animals; in the case of things, 
urhu [ # J is used. 

snys [/] snake ; snys n-szs [..%,] 
" river-snake", a snake said to 
be living in muddy places at the 
bottom of rivers ; it never bites ; 
v. aka [' ], arhuCoto [ .'.], afeke 
[...]> asiohu ["J, atai'kpi [..J, 
idodia [/J, ikpi [/], iukkpo 
[..J, obiEUE [*/], olose [ " * ' ] ,onuT 
[...], otiyiri [/.*], ouiuis [*/]. 

so [ > ] no. 

spipa [ " ' ] keg, barrel ; spip-exae 
[*'* ] a keg of powder; cf. Port, 

eree [/\] (1) somebody else 
(unknown to the speaker); 
yErhie-y-Et-oy-uuE, oy-£r£e no 

[7".VV] (iTfe ['.]) don't take 
it, for it is not my own, it 
is somebody else's! (oy-Eree 
[' ' \] always means " somebody 
unknown", while oy-ooa-oehe 
J '] does not imply "un- 
known £r(£)-oru 0-5na 
[.*'*\] "did somebody do me 
this" (when something bad has 
happened in one's absence). 
This example leads on to the 
meaning of (2) "some un- 
known enemy", implying any 
forces that work towards one's 
undoing, such as e.g. the evil 
wishes of other people, bad 
advice, opposition, etc. The eree 
[ . *\] i s given a sacrifice upon the 
advice of doctors; the act of 
sacrificing is called mu [ ' ] ze [ * ] 
na [ ' ], and the prayer is : £r£e ve, 
y-et$i n-iyaru-£ [,.',," J] "my 
erze, look (ye [J]) at the things 
I am doing (sacrificing) to you". 
The prayer averts the above- 
mentioned influences. The term 
occurs also in a thanksgiving 
formula used by a junior woman 
to her seniors when having taken 
part of a meal; Eree yigb-uE 
[.''J.] " the bad wishes of other 
people may not kill you!" v. 
kada [YL bukp£ ["J. (3) 
Further, this term is applied to 
a man whom one knows to be 
one's enemy; it seems to imply 
equality in age or rank : £r£-egbe 
ma u-ore ad [."'//] lit. " equals 
(and enemies) of each other are 
we and he" : he and I are equals 
(and enemies); £r£(e) t35 w uxi 

[..'.*] " vou are m y enemy", i.e. 
you have tried to undo me. 

(4) The term is also applied to 
witches, hence rho [J] mu ['] 
ze ['] n-sree means "to 

give food to witches"; v. skose 


£rie[/] Dba's harem at Sguae [_]. 
srha [,*] bush-cat; a little bigger 
than edi ["], smells disagreeably . 

srhas [ # \) blood; v. esagis [.%.]. 
erherhe [ . # J brain ; not regarded 

as seat of understanding, 
erhe [.J groin, abdomen below 


srhia [ \ ] wickedness ; £rhia-re w ima 
[ V . V . ] ' ' n ^ s wickedness is not 
good"7i.e. is too bad oka w srhia 

[.".]. P L e ~> " the first in 
wickedness", of a man: the 

evil spirit, the bad example; 

ona-t-oka w erhia n-or-egbee ni 

[..."..' SJ] " this is the evil 

genius of that family"; cf rhia 

erhio [.'] perseverance; oo-srhio 
[ '•] "a man of perseverance". 

srhoxwa [/.] a position in the 
gwega [ ]-divination (c.c.o.c). 
Of Yor. origin? 

srhouD [ , . . ] hermaphrodite. 

erhu [/] fiat, cap; srhujvie [/'*] 
"bead hat", with beads hang- 
ing down at both sides of the 
face; worn, in different styles, 
by the Oba, Ezomo ['*'] and 
probably Shi-oba [/"]- 

Erhurhut3u [....] (i) tail; srhuj 
rhuu-ekita [/"*.] dog's tail. 
(2) srhurhuo-esi [/*..] "tail of 
pig'*; a tree, Amphimas ptero- 
carpioides; its durable wood is 
used for poles supporting the 
ceiling in native houses. (3) 
erhurhuo-owa ["'.'] (sic!) roof 
of house (as seen from out- 
side) . 

etei [/], ec-[.];c/.oce[/]. 

ere 2 [/] and ['.] 3rd pers. sgl. as 
object and possessive pronoun; 
it has, besides, the forms: ee, 
§f£, s; ore, oe, 5fe, os. 

srete ["'] flute. 

et£ ['.] to-day; ere na ore [V.'M 

to-day he came. 
£tibo[*\] the second senior chief 

in the Iwebo .] -society. 
8t;iyo [./] a chief, head of the 

Umodu r\]-sib at Use ["]. 

SU° [ ] P art °* tra P : ^at part of 
a rope (when used in a trap) 
which entraps the victim. 

s t° [ J watchfulness; occurs in 
si ["] euo ['.] and yi ['] sro 
[\] "to watch, to observe". 

£ro [/] title of a chief, member 
of the Uzama [/.]; cf isIeoiEro 


et°t° [ ] a smau four-cornered 
bell; it is found on several 
shrines of gods, e.g. on those of 
Ovia [/] and Oxwahe [,J,], but 
also on the ancestral shrine. 

EfOjd [V.] chameleon. There is a 
tradition that the chameleon 
was present when the earth was 
created ; therefore it walks care- 
fully in order not to break it; 

omas n-etoxi [..VJ nt - " the 
chameleon-age", describes that 
age when man can only walk a 
few paces without stopping for 

ej;u [.,] female of erhue [/]- 

etuoo [/J river- tortoise, same as 

elukeluke [..'.']; in stories it is 

the female of egwi [/]. 
e£I [ J a small kind of squirrel 

with bulging eyes, 
sfioi [/J (1) world of the dead and 

the unborn; Osa [..] and the 

other gods reside there as well as 

the shis [ # J and the dead people. 


(2) a general term for "an- 
cestors", the "dead", and even 
the "gods". (3) masquerade- 
dancer (also ot)i w efit)i [."'.]); 
he is addressed as the god 
whom he represents, and he 
carries an uxurhe [ . . J ; he only 
speaks in sounds like mmm [J 
or gbrr [ J ; curses uttered in his 
presence and confirmed by his 
knocking the uxurhs to the 
ground are believed to be 
effective; v. Dvia [/]; sfiCi w odo- 

dua [. *V^v] is a masquerade- 
dance performed during the 
agwe^oyane [.".'], possibly for 
Osa [ , . ] . (4) ef it3-idu [ / / ] shrine 
of the Oba's father at the Sguae 
[ J. (5) the Christian Heaven. 

e£ ovo [ ' . . ] (i) brass. (2) brass-brace- 
let; V. Sa I ['], IgU w £fOUD [."..]. 

ese [/] well, properly; oru w £e-se 

[//] he did it well: redupl. 

sssse [/*] very well; oru w ee-sese 

[..."'] he is doing it very well; 

cf. ssEssoese [.*'.*], ese [ m \]. 
ese [."%] goodness, favour; oru 

o-ese [.*."%] he did me a favour. 

sseuese [."%..] excessive kindness 

(occurs in a proverb) . 
esete [.~Y] (also e-) plate. Of Port. 

origin ? 

sseseCese [."."] very much; cf. 
sse [/]. 

ssi ["] horse; cf. Yor. sji [••]. 

Ssigie [ ' • # ] name of an Oba, son of 
Dzolua [_J and brother of 
Arhuafa [*\]. 

Es5 [ # J suffering; poverty; esd 
gb-£e gbe (gbe 1) [ _"Y ] he is very 
poor; oo-esd no [//] he is a poor 
man; cf. so 2 ["]; v. oui [/]. 

Ete [ * * ] shooting contest held with 
bows. The target is an orange or 
a branch thrown to the ground, 
or an agberhie [.*.]. 

Ete [ # J sore (of long duration) . 
Etebo [ /] heap of mud collected 

for building purposes. 
£ ti [ .] place in forest where 

passage is barred by creepers. 
Eti [/] strength; power (physical 

as well as magical); Eti fo t5s 

[."*•] "strength has finished 

me": I am tired. 
Etu 1 [ J beard (chin beard and 

£tu 2 [ J (1) cellulitis. (2) sore 

gums; £tu xia ru£ ra [...>£.] 

are you suffering from sore 
gums? (xia [J] to pain). 
Euee [.W kola; Cola acuminata + 
verticilata ; £o-oha [ / • ] " bush- 
kola", a wild kola, Cola hetero- 
-phylla\ children suck the juice 
out of the husk; Eo-oh-ob-ita 
[/••,] "kola of the ordeal 
doctors bush": a wild kola, 
Cola caricifolia, used in an 
ordeal, and as a medicine for 
the bladder; EOEe-gabafi [/./] 
"Hausa kola", the kola intro- 
duced by the Hausa people. 
Kola is given to guests as a sign 
of courtesy and friendship; v. 

Eoi [ . ^] palm-oil ; £oi w egbe [ / " ' ] 

fat, lard. 
EoiEkoi [' J] name of a Bini 

village; seat of an OxwafiE 

[.-/.] shrine - 
Eoirhi [* ] a trap for animals; cf. 

Yor. ebiti [.,.]. 
eoo [_] (1) country; village (in- 
cluding, possibly, several quar- 
ters). (2) people; eoo hia [_'] 
everybody. (3) language (fol- 
lowed by name of country); 
Eou w £do [."*] Bini language; 
eo-uhobo [/ J Sobo language; 
eou^igabati [.**..*] Hausa lan- 
guage; v. urhu [.J, (e)d-. 


et5s [..] (i) word; £t3-are [/J ad- 
monition given to disobedient 
boys; eu-ata [ ^ ] truth; u- 
euata [."\J truiy; st3-oto [.^J 
whisper; oh-go-oto gbe (h5*[*]) 
[.'•/] he has a keen ear. (2) 
matter; affair; et5s na ima 
[.J.' J.] this affair is not good; 

e<5-3m:T[/-] "matter of child": 
child-bearing. (According to A., 
eve "word" has a long vowel in 
the stem, while eve "matter" 
has not. It is not certain whether 
this distinction is generally made 
by Bini speakers.) 

ewae ["] a tree, Polyalthia sua- 
veoleus; used as firewood and 
for roofing houses. 

Ewae [ ] sib, same as sgbee [ # "\] 
or unis ["]; no longer used as 
much as sgbee. 

ewe [ / ] goat ; ew-aus [ J female 
goat; Ew-owa [ # ^J castrated 

Ewers ["'] the daughter of one 
of the Ogi-efas [ * ] ; she was 
the wife of Ubi *[**], and a 
very kind woman. Hence, her 
name has become a symbol 
of goodness. Thus, there is a 
greeting oxi-Ewers o [ # •] god- 
speed ! a lucky journey ! 

ewe [ ] a certain quantity of 
yams : the yams stored between 
2 uhoho [ ##< ] on eru [/]. 

EwEdo [' \] name of an Oba. 

Ewedo ['* ] prison. 

Ewee [ chest (part of body); 
Y£fi t3-et5i u-£W£e (oe ['] "me", 
e(5iJ^]"thing")[\...M don't 
strike a blow at my chest ! 

£w£ka [ ' * * ] name of the first Dba 
of Benin ; it was taken up by the 
father of the present Dba, who 
reigned as 8wEka II. 

£wia [* ] smell; £wia-re ima 

[ V . V. ] its smell is not good ; 
cf. wia [J] . 

ewo [ / ] calabash funnel, used e.g. 
by wine tappers when pouring 
wine into demijohns or narrow- 
mouthed calabashes. 

Ewobi [""] a man who likes to 
play jokes on other people; 
£wobi w ot5a w uxi [ * ' ] you are 
a joker. 

ewu [*J garment; gown; coat; 
shirt (any garment except 
trousers, v. utalaws [.'..]); £wu 
ru£ m-ose gbe ['./."] your 
gown is very nice. £wu w ivie 
['*'*] bead dress ; worn by the 
Oba; the term does not include 
cap, collar (odigba [...]), and 
udahae [..J; cf. Yor. ewu [ ]. 

SwuakpE [' • ] name of an Oba. 

Ewuare [' \] name of an Dba under 
whom some of the present Bini 
gods (e.g. OxwahE [ m JJ] and 
Ak£ [ ']) are said to have lived 
as heroes and magicians. 

£xe [*J (1) quiver. (2) a curved 
tooth or bone which, in native 
opinion, the viper flings at its 
prey, out of the mouth. It is 
believed never to miss its ob- 
jective, and if the victim runs 
away, it must return to the viper; 
v. osumare [ ]. 

£xi [ ] a small climbing animal. 

Exivi [ J a tree, Piptadenia 
africana ; its fruit has the shape 
of a belt, and is used by boys 
in play; the bark is used as 
medicine for ooiyabE [.*"]. 

£xoxo ['"] (1) corner (as seen from 
inside); okfe y-£xoxo [.'.*"] he 
hid in the corner. (2) private 
(when used as a genitive after 
another noun), e.g. in isum- 
sxoxo [ m ] " conspiracy ' ' . 

exoxo [\ J a big monkey. 


exu [ # J door, gate; xwi^Exu na 
[ % ) J lock this door ! bi w exu na 
gbe [..J,'] close this door! 
exu w ogbore [.*'**], Exu w ogw-ore 
[ *'••] gate in odi ["] leading 
from street to compound. 

exu [ #- ] a person who is infirm, 
unable to walk; cf. ku 2 [/]. 

sxuxu [ '] a small fly, "sweat- 

exwia [/] bull; cf. okpia [ m J]. 

syoto [_J foundation of house: 
first layer of mud ; cf oto [.J. 

ezs [, ,] stream, river; eze n-aware 
[ . . " J . ] a bridged river ; a bridge ; 
redupl. ezeze [ # \] swampy, 
watery; ezeze eoa na xi [.\.^.*] 
this place is swampy ; v. oke [ / ], 
ugboyodo [....]. 

szi [..] (*) tree-stump (when 
several feet out of the ground). 
(2) space round the base of a 
tree; v. uyuyuCu [....]. 

Eziza J a spirit in the shape of 
a man; it roams about in the 
bush and catches people whom 
it may keep for years; it is 
believed to be "a great doctor", 
and its hair, et-£ziza [/_] (a 
plant?) is used by "doctors" in 
every kind of medicine in order 
to ensure quick action; cf. Yor. 
aaja [..], Ehoh-Eziza [."'..]. 

ezo ["] case (in court); cf. Yor. 

Ej0 [•']. 

fa [*] to cut loose, in (1) to cut 
palm nuts (and let them drop) ; 
yaf-£di na [J ' ,] go and cut 
these palm nuts ! (2) to remove 
the thatch of a house in order to 
replace it by new leaves (or, to 
remove old leaves from the 
thatch?); fa w owa na m£ [..'.'] 
remove (the thatch of) this 
house for me ! (the a represents 

only a very short glide) . f& ['] 
fua ['] (a) to release; to acquit 
in court; ofa w £ fua u-ikotu (or, 

u-ow-ezd [/*]) [/'..*%.] he re- 
leased him out of court; (b) to 
set free (a slave), f-ema [".] 
to loosen (i.e. to take out) 
yams from the stack (eru [/]) 
yaf-ema o-eru na [*'..'*] who 
took the yams out of this yam- 

fe 1 ['] (1) to escape; to slip out; 
ahiaoE ni f-ima [' '//'.] that 
bird escaped us; oooxa na fe 
o-iyoha [.Jr..] this boy is 
free from pawn, i.e. from being 
pawned; ofe u-obo de gb-oto 
[///;] it slipped out of my 
hand and fell down, f-orhio [/] 
"to escape life", i.e. to faint. 
(2) to be cured from a disease; 
okpia na fe n£ u-uhuou n-ovae 
[ J ' "\] this man has re- 
covered from (lit. "escaped") 
the disease he had; v. 1e [/]. 

fe 2 ['] to be rich; cf. fe [ J], eie 


ie [J] to enrich. 

f-ema ['.]; cf fa [']. 

fEE^E [•*] (1) entirely, completely; 
used with the verb fo [']; ofo 
fEEts [.**'] it is entirely finished 
(but v. fefesfe [•••]). (2) for 
good, finally; isi kpaa-ua f££t£ 
[ '/••] I left there for good. 

fsfesfs [••'] entirely, completely, 
altogether; used with the verb 
fo ["]; ofo n£f£f££f£ [.'*•••] it is 
completely finished; ri w oe fo 
fsfeefs eat it all up! 

(the fo may be omitted) ; v. gie 


f£ko an auxiliary verb (cf. 

h£ko [ m J]) indicating that the 
main action is carried out gently, 
gradually, which may come to 

mean "carefully " or even "se- 
cretly" according to the con- 
text; inwin-ifa fsko fo [."..J'] 
their work is getting slowly 
finished; fsko [ gently! 
("softly softly"), 
fetefere [ ] very sharp; accom- 
panies the verb mu 2 [']; v. 

wceoece [....]. 
fi [ ] (1) to throw; combinations 

with verbs: fi ["] d5 [*] to miss; 
to mistake; ahoa n-ikofg-nwa, 
ifi w £e do [WA.VI lit. "the 
hawk I just aimed at, I missed 

it";v.4Jto>[:.l «[']*['] to 

throw something into; on w ee fi 
oha [.V. /] he threw it into the 
bush, fi ["] gbe ['] to throw 
something at ... ; ofi^se gbe tie 
[.' J .'] he threw it at me. fi ['] 
gb-ua [ ' ] (gbe [ ' ] rua [ ' ]) to shoot 
dead, fi ['] kui [J] to throw 
ebo [A] ataman, fi ['] xe [J] 
to throw ebo [ # "\] on the road 
(same as gbe [}] xe [J]). Com- 
binations with nouns: fi^agba 
[./] to summon a meeting; in 
a saying which occurs in a 
story; but v. also tie [J], t-iko 
[/]. fi w axw£e [*\] to play 
marbles, fi egbe del-egbe [ ". '.] 
to transform oneself, e.g. into 
an animal; v. xia [J], fi^ema 
["J to dig the big yam-poles 
(ikpEsi [...]) into the ground; 
for the EyE [/]-poles it is 
ba^ema [/.], v. ba 2 [J]; fi ['] 
"to throw" expresses a more 
forcible action than ba [J] "to 
pierce"), fi^eso [ /] weri-egbe 
[...] "to turn some things 
round": to revise (Egh. Hist.), 
fi^exwae [*\] yo [\] to wish 
something bad to a man, holding 
an exwae [\] in front of the 
mouth and spitting after the 

words; to curse by means of a 
charm; "to implicate". fi w Eku 
[./] refers to the movements 
during the coitus; a formula of 
blessing is: uyufi Eku ihoi 

[*.....] ma y y° ur coitus move- 
ments not be in vain ; used by a 
person senior to a woman met 
when sweeping the house, or the 
dais of her husband's Erha ["], 
as an act of purification when 
having cleansed herself after 
menstruation; v. axu£ [/]. f-iha 
[\] to cast an oracle (does not 
indicate which oracle is meant) ; 
n-of-iha [ .*.] for " oracle-doctor" 
as given by N.W.Th. is said not 
to be as good as ob-iha [,\], v. 
oho [/]. f-ita ["] to quote a 
proverb as answer to somebody's 
question; he has to guess the 
meaning; "to drop a proverb", 
v. kp-ita ["]. f-iue [\] to give 
somebody a hint by means of a 
proverb; the person thus ad- 
dressed needs further explana- 
tion; of-ita f-ioe hie [/'*/] he 
gave me a hint by means of a 
proverb, f-iyeke [ \ J gbe [ * ] to 
turn the back towards some- 
thing, e.g. gb-od£ [/], to the 
road, fi^oba [ /] yi ['] to put 
one's hand into something, fi^okl 
["J to perform oki [\], v. gbe 
[ " ] . fi^ukusE [ " ' . ] to construct a 
rattle, i.e. to throw the cord 
round the calabash to and fro 
when making the net covering 
the calabash, fi ['] unu [/] to 
speak in an unseemly way of, 
or to, one's superior (Egh. 
Hist.). (2) to beat (also of the 
pulse); obo ru£ fi leilei fa 

[../'•>.] is y° ur P^se (lit. 
"hand") beating? fi ['] e (5i 

to hit somebody, lit. "to 


hit (somebody) something", viz. 
a blow: refers e.g. to a blow in 
anger, while gbe i ['] means " to 
flog as a punishment" ; ifi w 8t-e(3i 
[."\\| I hit him, cf. egbe n- 

ofi^oua^eoi [ %] . fi oyoro " 

ko [ '] to hop on one foot. 
(3) to shoot; v. sa 2 [']. (4) to 
attack; of a disease; emfi fi^se 
[,. 'J] "small pox has struck 
him": he has caught small pox. 
(5) it also denotes the direction 
(of a throw only?) into some 
locality, v. fi ['] fi [']. (6) to leave, 
in fi [•] yi [*]; ofi w £(e) yi [/••] 
he left it. fi ['] ya [*\] to die, 
of a man with family ; wu [ ' ] is 
used of a single man; of a man 
who has a family it was said 
that "part of his body is still 
living", v. also ikia [/]. Iterat. 
filo [/] (a) to drop things one 
by one; (b) to shoot birds or 
animals one by one; (t)-ifil-ifa 
[\\] I am shooting them one 
after the other ; (c) to be foolish ; 
t-ufilo [\W are you mad? v. 
kiza [/]; cf. fieye [/]. 
na [*] (1) to cut; fia [*] fua ['] to 
cut off. fia [*] gbe [*] "to cut 
(and) add to (?) ": to bless; of a 
Christian blessing (bu tv. n- 

erhuou (na2[']) ['..] na [ - ] "to 
say prayer for (somebody) ": to 
bless in the pagan way); cf. 
afiagbe[/-]. fia [*] na ['.] tocut 
(food) for somebody; t-urami- 
5mo nana [**./.'] "may you get 
a child (or, children) to cut 
(food) for!": used as a formula 
of thanksgiving after a meal by 
a woman towards a senior 
woman or man, also to her own 
parents, v. srse [."%]. fia [*] 
ra [J] (a) to cross a river by 
swimming, or a road; if a fi-ezs 

ra [\,.JJ] they are crossing 
the river; cf. gbe [J] ra [J], v. 
gwa 1 [']; (6) to break into a row 
of people called ikpokpa [ , _ ] at 
an ugie [ . .], or into a row (single 
or double file) of people at an 
Dvia [/] festival. In the case of 
the Dvia, the man was (is?) 
whipped for it ; in the case of the 
ikpokpa, he was formerly killed 
and is nowadays made to pay for 
a big sacrifice costing up to £5. 
fia [ ' ] re [ ' ] (a) to bite ; ekita fia 
08 te [ *"/"•] a dog has bitten me; 
(b) idiom.: to cheat; iyafia w e|;- 
esese, yaye usy-ere [.W'W.] 
I shall cheat him ("bite him 
eat") properly, (just) look at me 
and (look) at him ! (i.e. you will 
see). Combinations with nouns: 
f-idi [ ' t ] to dig a grave : f i-enwe 

L..~\] "t° t> e cut breast": to 
be weaned, fia ['] iyo ["] "to 
cut money": to fine somebody; 
v. z£ i [*] ; afi-ozo w iyo o-ikotu n- 
owis [.""./.'*] Ojo was fined 
in court this morning. f-Iyo [ " ] 
to change money; f-iyo na (i)ms 
["/] change this money for 
me ! v. idola [".]• f-ihue [ ' * ] " to 
be cut at the nose": to be de- 
faced, of a coin or cowrie, 
f i-ode [ . / ] yi [ ] obo [/] "to cut 
the road to somebody's hand": 
to reach a certain place earlier 
than somebody else by using a 
shorter road; to make a short 
cut. fi-osuyu [*"..] yi ["] egbe 
[/] to trouble somebody (by 
means of charms or intrigues), 
fi-ova [ # /] to give a nickname 
(praise-name), v. also re 1 [*]; 
ofi-ova ms [/ '\'] he gave me a 
nickname, fi-oka ["J to reap 
corn (maize) . (2) to become, be, 
cut or broken ; to come off (of a 

button e.g.); iri n-itae n-iterat- 
ukpo (ta [•]) yi nag [./V* \M 
"the rope I put up (ta [']) on 
(yi [*]) which I was about to 
spread clothes has snapped" 
(bu [J] is only used of wood and 
iron; v. also wu [*]). (3) to kill 
a sacrificial victim. (4) to be 
salty; v. tataata [ #> J. (5) to 
smell sharp ; v. taitai [ m J . 

f*at5£ [/] to hit (a man); ifiao-or,- 
eoi [..*."%] lit. "I hit him some- 
thing", i.e. a blow (the r. is not 

f-idi ['.]; C /.na[']. 

fie [J] to make a clearing for a 
farm, with matchets, previous 
to felling the trees on the plot; 
fi-fie ni-sese [.V*] make that 
clearing properly!; cf ifie [/]; 
v. gb-ite ["]. 

fieye [/] to sway, to swing some- 
thing; ofiey-uherhg xia o-imi w og 

[ . .' V .' V] ne was swinging the 
firebrand (along) when I saw him ; 
cf. fi ["]; v. rue^e [/] (to shake 
something that is on the ground) . 
fiefigfiEfisfig [ ] imitates the 
cry of the rat oxa [ ]. 

Mio ["];c/. Bin. 


fioyofioyo [ ' " * ] very tall and thin, 
of a tree only; used with otas 
[ "it is tall". 


f-iue [*.]; c/. fi [']. 

f-iyeke [*..]; cf. fi [']. 

fo [ * ] to finish ; often followed by 
ns ['] "already"; fo [J] also 
often follows another verb in 
order to express that the action 
expressed by that verb has been 
finished; erha na fo ns [//*] 
this (fire) wood is finishing 
(already); orhi-sre fo [,"'J] 

"he has taken it finished": he 
has taken it all; cf. uiove [."%.]. 
f d [ * ] to perspire ; used with the sub- 
ject ofo " perspiration" ; ofo fo i3e 
[.**•] I am streaming with per- 
spiration; cf. ofo [/], fo [/]. 
fo [J] to splash a liquid "medi- 
cine * ' on plants in order to make 
them yield plentifully. This 
liquid, called ebo n-ayafo w inya 
[ " *], i.e. "medicine to be 
splashed on yam", is obtained 
from the tree osuobo [/ J]; cf 
afo [/] (which is also splashed 
on the body or the house for the 
purpose of purification), 
f-orhio [ / ] ; cf. f e [*]. 
fu ['] in fu ['] re ['] to become, 
be, cool; fu ['] egbe [/] to be 
peaceful, comfortable for some- 
body ; eCa na (or, aga na [ * \ ] 
this chair") fu u-egbe [,J ,\'] 
this place is comfortable (i.e. 
peaceful, without worry) for 
me". fu w £ko [,,\], only in the 
pf . (fu w eko [' *\]) : to be of peace- 
ful disposition, 
fu ['] kugbe [ ' ' ] to mix ; of u w ofigbo 
t)-igati ku gbe [ / " '//.] he mixed 
palm-oil with gari. 
fu 1 [J] in fu [}] re ['] to cool; 
ofu w ame na re [ / * J / ] he cooled 
this water, 
fu 2 [/] to snatch; to grab; 
ibieka ni, wafu eoee n-or-eua vio 

LJ'S V] "(you) children 

there, snatch the kolas there and 
take them!" fu sue [/ ] to 
stammer, or, more exactly to 
begin one word before finishing 
the other (v. d-eoe [\]). 

1 ['] second part of verbal 
combinations implying that the 
object is thrown away (but for 
liquids and grains, v. kua [']); 
v. mu [*], na ["], fa [*]. 


f ua 2 ['] to be white ; of ua o-ako 
n-unu [/'/•] "it is white like 
the teeth of the mouth"; cf. 
fuofua [/], sfua [* J. 

fua [J] (i) to perish; a curse: 
urafua [''J] may you perish! 
(answer : iwua w en-ofua o [ m m ' v • ] 
" I am forbidden what is perish- 
ed o" : something like " God has 
not destined me to perish"). 
(2) to die out; sgbs-ifa fua xia 
[ m "J'] lit. "their family (sib) 
are perishing along", i.e. dying 
out. This would be a bad curse 
if uttered to a member of the 
clan; cf. fua ["](?). 

fusfuefuE [_.] smothering, of a 
fire that only smokes a little; a 
smaller fire than that described 

by ruerusrue [...]; used with 
the verb ba [J]. 
fuofua [/] to be white ; ukpo n-ozo 
rhuae fuofua [..."%.*] the cloth 
O j o wears is white ; cf. fua 2 [ ' ] . 

ga 1 [*] to serve; oga w e ['J] he 
served him. ga ['] yi ['] to serve 
for a betrothed girl (with her 
father); oga y-ooox-uui [.%/."] 
he served for the girl; cf. ugaos 

ga 2 ['] to cook; to be done, of 
food that is being cooked; inya 
na fsko ga ['../'] this yam is 
cooking (gradually); v. hie [J]. 

ga [J] (1) to surround; v. Is [J]. 
(2) to fence, i.e. to set a fence 
as part of a trap across the bush, 
cf. ega 2 [/]; or, to put a fence 
around something, e.g. a tree, or 
the hole of an animal; ga 
szi erha na n-idoxu ifi y-o 

L/*\V..M lit. "fence the 
base of this tree that I may come 
and set traps there ! " v. gba 2 


gadagbaa [•"] big (not fat); of 
animals, e.g. horses, elephants, 
bulls, hippopotami, or cro- 
codiles; used with the verb 
ye [']; cf. gidigbii [••']. 

S a S a [. ] to surround; ohs w ifa 
gag-egbe [..'...'] he surrounded 
himself with them (also: ov-ifa 

[./.]); c/.ga[/]. 

gaigai [ _ ] describes a manner of 
walking : a measured walk, with 
wide steps; "white-man style"; 
used with the verb xia [ ' ] ; (the i 
is not short). 

ge [%] same as de [^]. 

gegeege [ * * * ] very high (of a hill) ; 
oke na y o gegeege [.*.'** * ] this hill 
is very high ; cf. gogoogo [' "];v. 
golotoo [ ' * ' ] and geletee [*'"]. 

gele [/] an auxiliary verb em- 
phasizing the main verb; may 
be translated by << indeed M or 
similar words ; ogele|;u w £e [.."%] 
in fact he is doing it ; ogeletu w £e 
[..""%] really he did it; geleta^e 
ye [..'J] go repeat it! 

geletee [ * * ' ] extraordinarily high 
(used with the verb yo [*]); cf. 
golotoo [••']. 

g£g££ge [" ' ] tightly shut. 

ggyE^geygy [ ] imitation of the 
sound of a bell (egogo ["""]; but 
v. koyokoyo [ ]) ; v. also goyo- 
goyo ["'*]. 

gi (g u ) ['] (!) to allow (to do 
something) ; to let ; og-if a tu^ee 

he allowed them to do 
it; he let them do it. In the 1st 
and 2nd pers. sgl., gu, gu are 
used instead of gi: igu w £ ru_£e 

(a) I am allowing you 
to do it ; (b) I am helping you to 
do it, I am doing it with you; 
pf.: ogu u£ ru w £e (a) [/•' \] he 
allowed me to do it; (b) [.'*•>] 
he helped me to do it. (y. gu 


[•]). gi w a [ m J] is used in the elephant; used with the verb 

ist persrpl. meaning "let us": ye [ ' ] ; cf. gidigbii [ # . . ] , gadagbaa 

gi^ayaxia [J"] let's go. (2) to [•••]. 

permit of something being done gie ['] (1) to send; gie ["] uhuou 

(equivalent to English suffix [//] to send on an errand; ogi- 

-able) ; £gLari w oe [J , J ' ~\] it is Ef-uhuou gi-erha w e [.".*.'".] he 

not edible. sent him on an errand to his 

gl ['] to leak, of a canoe, or house; father. (2) also used as second 

oko t5e gi [..'*] my canoe is verb of a combination in order 

leaking ; cf. uglvz [."%.]. to indicate a direction towards 

gia [ J] to cut (with many objects, something or somebody (v. 

e.g. a bundle of things, or a cord above). (3) to attack, of diseases, 

containing many strings, etc.); the object being the particular 

ogiajri na [...'.] he is cutting spot that is affected (possibly, 

these ropes ; cf. giagia [ ' ] , giaya this item does not belong to 

[/]. *[•]). 

giagia [/] to cut into many gie 1 [J] to compare ; ysya w e gie 

pieces; giagi-ab-erha na (or, oe ['\.\| "don't take him 

bd-ab- [..]) [...V.] lop the compare (with) me": don't 

branches of this tree off! cf. compare him with me ! gie [J] 

gia [J~\l v. bsle [/]. ma [J] to show something that 

giagiagia [...] bright red, used cannot be taken in one's hand, 

with the verb ba 1 [J] ; v. or that is at a distance, to some- 

teyeteye [....]• bod y » agi-ugb-q;e ma Be [ . . V. / ] 

giaya [/] to cut or tear into little he showed me his farm (ma is 

pieces; ogiaya w e ku erha ku iri long), gi-ods da [./J ma [J] 

[ V..'.. 1 ne tore U P (* nto " to snow a bad way": to lead 

little pieces) and threw it about astray (also in a metaphorical 

(e.g. of an infant tearing paper) ; sense) ; ogi-ode da ma x3e o-ino-f- 

c/.giaL/]. ibude [."•../••..] he led me 

gi-as£ [/J; cf. gie 2 [J]. astray when I had asked his 

gidigidi 1 [ . ] big ; of yams ; used advice; v. bibi [/], ya [*] dido 

with the'verb ye [']. [/], gu ['] dido [/]. 

gidigidi 2 [....] blazing (sending gie 2 [J] to spit, in gi-asg [/J. 

flames up); used with the verb gi-exwae [/J y-o [\\ to spit on 

ba 1 [J]] v. kpoo [.], woo [J. a charm after pronouncing a 

gidigbi [...] strong; robust; a prophecy or curse, in order to 

riddle: okpia gidigbi mu w okpia confirm the words spoken, v. 

gidigbi gba [.A./V../] a DxwahE songs 7. gie [/] 

strong man catches a strong always seems to imply deliberate 

man and ties (him) ; the answer spitting; v. tu w asg ["J. 

is olodo mu w £xu gba ["."."] gie ['] to laugh; ogi£ y-£UE oe 

the door frame keeps the door [.*..*] he is laughing at my 

tied ; cf. gidigbii ['••]. words ; ogb-oxoxo gi£ [..*.'] he is 

gidigbii [•** ] very big, e.g. of trees, bursting with laughter; cf. ogiE 

houses, boxes, rocks; of an [.']. 


gis [J] to give way; to break 
suddenly (of a worn-out cloth) . 

gis [J] to burn; owa giefs fefesfe 
J ."] the house burnt (or, is 
burnt) to the ground ; cf. agie [/]. 

gisgie [/'] to be quick at some- 
thing; ogiegie nwina [.J' he 
is working quickly; cf. sgiegis 


gisfe [ ] very bright; of weather; 
sde rafe giefe [.V/*] the day 
was very bright. 

gibgib [ ] tall and thin (of men 
only; v. sigosigo [ ] which 
seems to indicate a greater de- 
gree of thinness; used with otae 
[ "he is tall"); v. nwssfs 

gina [ m ] (i) to be against; sue 
na gina w e [,J,,\] " this matter 
is against him": he is guilty in 
this matter. (2) used as second 
part in the combination ; rhia [ ' ] 
gina [/] in agbo rhia glna w s 
[..'/.] "life is spoilt for him", 
meaning "he is impotent", or, 
"he is destitute"; in case of a 
woman "she is barren", or "she 
has a venereal disease"; cf. 
agbeginoto [ ]; v. gbe 1 [*]. 

gi-ods [./] ma [J]' t cf. gie 1 [/]. 

giogiogio [ # J very hot, of boiling 
water ; used with the verb to 3 [ ' ] ; 

v. yiuiyiri [....]• 
giri, gri [ # § ] describes a sudden or 

unexpected motion; ogwa kpao 
S iri [//...] he got up suddenly ; 
v. ha 1 [J]. 
giriririri (i very short and almost 

inaudible) [ ] describes the 

patter of rain, also that of rain 
not yet on the spot ; oso giriririri 

[."% ] it patters; v. kpata- 

kpatakpata [ ]. 

gizaka [ _ J describes the falling 
down (or the noise of it?) of 

crooked things such as trimmed- 
off branches, or a lame man ; the 
characteristic feature seems to 
be that one part of the falling 
object (or man) touches the 
ground before the other; ode 
gizaka [.%...] it fell (in the 
above-stated way). 

go ["] to shout, go ['] nwa [J] to 
praise somebody in songs (for 
some accomplishment), Egh. 
Hist. ; ogo nwaoe [.'.'] he praised 
me; v. rho 1 [J], tia [J], 

gobagobagoba [".."] describes a 
manner of walking : the walk of 
a cripple whose feet are bent to 
one side so that he walks with 
a list, the foot that is behind 
moving sideways. Used with the 
verb xia [ ' ] . 

gogoogo [•••] high (e.g. a hill); 
used with the verb ye [']. 

goyogoyo [""] describes the 
sound made by a bell (sgogo 
['"]; but v. koyokoyo [ ]); 

v. gexeygsyey [ J. 

gokaa ["] very tall and lean, of 
man; used with the verb ye [*], 
but also with tota ['J], to de- 
scribe a tall man sitting upright 
cf. gukaa [**]; v. rhigoo [••]. 

golotoo [ * * * ] very high, used with 
the verb yo ['] ; cf. geletee [•••]. 

goofo [ * * ] loud ; describes the noise 
made by a cricket; used with 
the verb tu [ ' ] . 

go ['] to become, be bent, 

crooked; ogoe [ %] it is crooked;['] go [A 

go [J] in go w (u)gie [J J] to hold 
the (annual?) festival of a juju 
(not used for ancestor-festivals) ; 
d-sys n-uwa yago-gi-oxwahs yi- 

ko [ \'\J''] when do you 

hold the festival of Oxwahs 
friend ? cf. ugogie [ J . 



gSgaogo [•••] upright; uru ihue 

gogDogo [.'"*"] your nose 
stands upright (special charac- 
teristic of the European, hence 
the above sentence may be 
closed with: o-ihu-ebo ['"*] 
1 ' like the nose of a white man ' ' . 

1 This feature is considered as 
funny. On the other hand, an 
ihue perns ['*..]" flat nose 1 * , said 
to be: o-ihu-egwi ["*'] "like 
the nose of a tortoise*', is not 
thought to be beautiful, either) . 

gobgolo [ ] describes the walk 

of a very tall man with the 
upper part of his body swaying ; 
used with the verb xia [']; cf. 

ogok [...]; v. bgbfagb [....]. 
gu i ['] a verb indicating (i) that 

another action is performed by 
the subject with the help of 
somebody else, or (2) that the 
action is reciprocal, e.g. gu ["] 
b-owa [/] to help (somebody) 
in building a house; gu ["] 
de ['] to buy something from 
somebody; we w igu de [ /'•] I 
bought it from you. gu ["] 
dia [J] to stay with somebody 
or something, esp. in order to 
guard it, e.g. of a hunter's boy 
who watches the kill while his 
master is in the bush, gu [*] 
dido [/], gu [•] fi ['] do ['] to 
lead astray by giving false in- 
formation; v. gie 1 [J], ya 1 [']. 
gu ["] gua [J] to talk with 
somebody, gu ['] gwi [*] to 
quarrel with somebody, gu [*] 
gbina [/] to fight with some- 
body, gu ['] ho [J] to help 
(somebody) to find something. 
In an impersonal use, gu means 
"to succeed": Dgu Se £u [ -"• ] 
"it helped me to do (it)": I 
succeed in doing (it); idiom.: 


egbe gu^ee ru "body 
helped her to do" or "body 
did (it) with her": she had a 
miscarriage, gu becomes gu in 
front of the objective t3s "me" 
and vs. "us", 
gu 2 [']; cf. gi [']. 

gu a 1 LJ] (also: guata [/] used by 
old people) to know how to do 
a thing; used with verbs only: 
igua xa-re [J'J*.]I don't know 
how to say it. 

gua 2 [J] (1) to adulterate; 
ogu-anyo na [/'*.] he has 
adulterated this palm wine; 

3g ua ^°t°ka na [. ..".] he has 
adulterated (the metal of) this 

ring (in both cases giia may 

b e [/])- ( 2 ) tne second example 
can also mean "he has charmed 
this ring" (in order to give its 
owner a certain power, e.g. to 
fell an opponent in fighting at a 
single blow); v. le ["]. 

gu e [J] I 1 ) t° cover (with a lid) ; 
g-uwawa na n-iki3. yet! y-o 

L.J..'\~\] cover this pot in 
order that the flies may not get 

into it. (2) to be covered ; uwa- 
wa na guere [..J.JJ] this pot 
is covered. 

gueere [ ## ] very small (same as 
gyeyegyeye [....]); cf. gie(e)ce 
[ . J (e.g. in oyede ne giere [../..] 

guka [ ## ] describes a certain way 
of sitting down (used with tota 
['J]); used e.g. of a vulture 
perching on a tree ; oti y-uhuo- 
erhaguka [.'.'.*..] it has (flown 
and) perched on a tree. In the 
case of a man sitting down, it 
describes "a huge, big man, sit- 
ting down as if collapsing." 

gukaa [••] very lean, but not im- 
plying tallness, e.g. people who 


are lean on account of a disease ; 
stresses the leanness less than 
kagukagu [••••]; of. gokaa [••]. 

gulc£ [..] intensifies an impres- 
sion of flexibility (used with the 
verb ooxo [/]); of the tail- 
feather of a cock e.g., or the 
creeper ika [*J, or the shrub 
unwerhi-ota [...]. 

gulugulu [ — ] deep; of narrow 
holes, such as uy-egwi [/'], 
wells, or deep places in a river; 
used with the verb ye [ * ] . 

g-unu [ '] to keep quiet; g-un-u§ 
[J] something like " shut up ! " ; 
a milder expression is gi w ah-e(3e 
[ J % ] lit. "let hear word"; cf. 
gue [>](?); v. htt[']nwa[']: 

guozaa [ mt ] describes the noise of 
falling trees when a farm is 
being made. 

guot)£ [/] (i) to brush with some- 
thing soft (an orokE [..,] or a 
brush, or leaves); to dust (by 
shaking) ; v. bofe [ / ] , (2) idiom. : 
guDo-egbe [..'] "to shake 
body" : to turn brusquely round 
when addressed ; oguoo-egbe kpao 

v-igu w ee gua [,.'\" A/] he 
turned round brusquely when I 
was talking to him. (3) to wag 
the tail (of a dog) ; the man whom 
the dogs greet in this way is 
object of the verb, 
gwa 1 ["] to pull (of a canoe) , also 
gw-oko [/]. gwa ['] gbera w £ze 
[ . .] *° somebody across a 
river, gwa ['] y-o ["\] lit. "to 
pull in it": to join in pulling; 
gwa y-o [.~\] join in pulling! 
(to men sitting in the canoe 
without helping) . gw-eze [ \ ] to 
cross a river by canoe, gw-ams 
[*.], given by N.W.Th. with the 
same meaning, was said not to 
be used (by A.) ; cf Yor. wa [ . ]. 

gwa 2 ['] to dig; gw-fihe [\] to 
make a yam-heap (or a heap for 
planting coco-yam or gari); cf. 
Yor. wa [J. 

gwa 3 [ * ] to fit ; to be suitable (of 
rooms) ; ogwa oe [ / * ] it fits, suits, 
me (in space) ; we w-eoa yagwa^e 
y i [/*•/'] "do you think (lit. 
''say")* (that room) there will 
fit him? " (i.e. that there will be 
enough room for him); idiom.: 
Ogbe w gw-ih5wa "°g be 
(a quarter of Benin City) does 
not fit Ih5wa (a name) " : it is in- 
tolerable ; e.g. in n-uye na, Ogbe w 
uegw-ih5wa-r£ [.'.'J J.' J.] lit. 
"what you are in now, Ogbe 
will not fit Ihowa any more 
(oe [J]) to-day": the temper 
in which you are to-day is be- 
coming intolerable (sc. and I can 
no longer put up with it; e.g. to 
a nagging wife) . 

gwa 4 ['] in gwa ["] ehis ["] to 
scratch (with nails, or birds with 
their claws) ; oxuo na gwa (3-ehiE 
[.J.'"] tn i s woman scratched 
me; v. nyi 2 [']. 

gwa 5 ['] in gwa ['] kpao ['] to 
get up. 

gwab [/] to search; ogwal-en-Ewe 
[ ' * •] he searched for the goat, 
gwab [/] kua ['] to dig some- 
thing out (of a heap of similar 
things e.g.) ; ogwal-isawEWE kua 
[ he (or, it, e.g. a fowl) 

is searching, digging out ground- 
nuts; cf. gwa 2 [']. 

gwe ["] "to be with": to be pos- 
sessed by (somebody) ; inya w iro 

n-iyare-rE [/'V'J 1 have no 
yam to eat to-day; answer: 

ogwe Ce [.**] "it is with me": 
I have some; cf. gu [']. 
gw£ ['] (1) to know; to be ac- 
customed to something ; ogw-ebe 


gbe [.'*•] " ne knows book 
much " : he is very clever. (2) to 
be a favourite (of a wife or a 
servant) ; ogwe oe gbe [/••] she 
is a great favourite with me; 
(but: Dgw-soe gbe [.'.'] he knows 
how to talk well) ; also gw-obD, 
gu w obo to be intimately 

acquainted with : igu w obo-re 
[/V.] I am very well ac- 
quainted with him; Dgu w obo ue 
[.".'] he is my special friend; 
ogu w obodD-re [."V.l "she is 
the special friend of her hus- 
band": she is her husband's 
favourite wife; cf. gu 1 ['], gua 

gwe [J] to sacrifice to one's head 
during the igwe [ < J-festival; 
otherwise ru w uhuuu [ / J is 
used. At igwe [ t J a special 
" amen "-formula is used: gua" 
Cbnyee[/ # J (otherwise iss[/]). 

gw-ehe [\]; cf. gwa 2 [*]. 

gw-ezs [\]; c/. gwa 1 [']. 

gwezegweze [ ] entirely (Egh. 

Hist.) ; orhia mu w oto gwEzegwszs 
[," * ' ] it is entirely spoilt. 

gwi ['] (1) to quarrel; to be angry 
with somebody; magbagwi [/•] 
we quarrelled with one another ; 
ogu oe gwi [/ '•] he was angry 
with me (i.e. a master with his 
servant). (2) to state one's case 
in court; to litigate; hence: 
n-ogwi [/] litigant (used in con- 
text only) . n-ogwi-w-if e vo^osee 
[. \ . . .] the litigant said he had 
a witness. n-Dgu w ooa gwi [..../ * ] 
" he who quarrels with a man " : 
plaintiff {v. n-oti-oua ezd ['.'.'])• 
n-agu gwi [ / ' ] " he with whom is , 
quarrelled" : defendant; accused 
(v. n-ati-q;-£zo ["/••]); idiom.: 
ogwi ez-uw-unu [ m ] "he is 
stating case of inside of mouth " : 

he is grumbling indistinctly 
(also ogwi huhuhu [/•/]). (4) 
to drone (of beetles >nly). 

gw-obo [/]; cf. gw£ [/]. 

gw-oko [/]; cf. gwa 1 ["]. 

gwo ['] to tremble; to shiver; 
ogwoe he shivered; v. 

SOgWDSOgWO [ ]. 

gwoyo [.*] i 1 ) to get, or, be broken 
(of glass, earthenware, etc.); 
uvegbe na gwoyoe [..,/.."%] this 
mirror is broken (but can still 
be used; v. wu ['] which means 
that it is now completely use- 
less). (2) to break something; 

ogwDy-uyegbe [ ' ] he broke 
1 1 • i- .... j 

the mirror. 

gyafafSfafafa [* ] loud, de- 
scribes the crying of an infant. 

gyeyegyeye [....] of very small 
size (e.g. of infants or yams); 
same as guEErs [ # J ; inya na biee 

gyfiyEgyEys [."A....] this yam 
has yielded very small fruit. 

gba 1 ['] an auxiliary verb in- 
dicating that the main action 
is done by several subjects to- 
gether; ifagbaru^ee ['/*%] they 
are doing it together; gi-a 
gbaruj-e [J,"\] let us do it 
together ! 

gba 2 [ ' ] (1) to tie ; ogba (3-obD 
[/.'] he tied my hands, gba 

['] g in * [.*] to tie to; igb- 
ab-enwau-DXErhs ni gina-t-egbe 

[.'"".. J'..°] "I have tied the 
branch of that young oil palm 
(oxErhE [_]) to its body". 
(Also gba f ] mu [*].) gb-ogba 
['.] to make a fence (ga [J] 
round something) . I terat . gbab 
[.*] is used with plural objects, 
but in Dgbab 6-obo [..'.'] it 
means : "he tied my ' hand 
several times round", i.e. he 


bandaged my hand. (2) to stick 
together; cf. gba 1 [']. 
gba [J] (1) to know somebody 
thoroughly; of people only; 
igba-te-y-ooa w esi no [.*."..] 
I know him thoroughly, (that) 
he is a good man. (2) to be 
complete ; exaeoe n-idu ikotu na 

gba ns [ V/1 (*>E']) the 

chiefs attending this court are 

gba [\] interjection used in 

calling dogs (same as sss). 
gbaa [ . ] level ; used with the verb 


gbadaa [ • • ] wide ; broad (of bigger 
things than gbadaa [..]), e.g. of 
a river or pond; cf. gbodoo ["]. 

gbadaa [ # J wide; broad (used e.g. 
of a basin) ; oose gbadaa [ . ~\ . . ] 
it is broad; cf. gbadaa [**]. 

gbagbaagba ["'] (1) strongly; 
closely; if a kexi-ose gbagbaagba 

[ . . . ] tne y became close 
f riends(texts : Uke keoe arhuaro) . 
(2) rigid; stiff; oye gbagbaagba 
[/•••] it is stiff (same as egi-aooxo 
[J .' ..] it cannot be bent), 
gbayada [...] (also gbatayada 

[ ]) describes the fall of 

something having extremities, 
e.g. the human body, when 
thrown down in wrestling ; mu-s 

gb-oto gba^ayada ['/ ] throw 

him down gb. ! (as an encourage- 
ment to wrestlers, also ya gbe ! 
[/], gbarayada!). 

gbakagbaka [...J big; thick; of 
plantains and teeth ; oysds na ye 
gbakagbaka [,J.\...] this plan- 
tain is thick. 

gbalaza [ * ' * ] wide ; used with the 
verb ye ['], of ditches, pits, 
ponds and rivers; indicates a 
still wider degree than gbodoo 


gbe 1 [*] (1) to hit; to flog. 
(2) to kill; v. also gbe ["] tua [']. 
Iterat. gbele [/]; ogbel-ifa hia 
[.//] and ogbei-ifa hi-a [./.' J] 
he killed them all. (3) to per- 
form something, esp. a dance; 
to dance. (4) to pick (leaves 
from a tree). (5) to catch, of 
a trap. This verb is also used 
for various purposes, its exact 
meaning being determined by 
a following noun or verb. Ex- 
amples of combinations with 
verbs: gbe [*] gtn-oto [/J to hit 
against the ground, e.g. when 
killing a snake, and also in the 
meaning of * ' to insult somebody 
who is ill and in bed" ; cf. agbegij 
noto [/..J. gbe [*] mi£ [J] lit. 
"to hit (and) take (something) 
from (somebody)": to seize 
something by force; ogbe t5e 
mie vs-xe [/*/\] he seized it 
from me (by force), gbe ['] 
mu^oto [*'J to ruin somebody, 
gbe ['] tua ['] to kill, gbe ['] 
yo ['] gbe ['] re [*] to turn over 
and over; to fumble; ogbe n-eui 
yo gb-se re, omade [.""•.. " 
"he handled the thing 'to and 
fro' (but) he did not buy (it) " 
(the syllable gb-se is actually a 
fall, not a low tone; this could, 
however, not be shown here); 
imafe o-ogua, oyagb-en-sCs yo gb- 
se re o-et>a ["../..'. W..M 
"I don't know what he is talk- 
ing (about), he is turning the 
matter over and over there", 
i.e. he is not talking to the point. 
Combinations with nouns: gb- 
akiysys [ " . ' ] to make fun (of 
somebody: ya [*]); iya^e gb- 
akiysys [.'J'\'] I made fun of 
him, or, made a fool of him; v. 
gb-iba ["]. gb-akpa ["] to be 



bald, gb-alama [\ J to walk 
about gossiping; " to interfere" ; 
ugb-alama gbe, yari w eke n-urie 

[.'.."...J] "you gossip too 
much, go to where you are going ' ' 
(or, mu w at-us y-od-o (ye [J]) 
[ * . J A] "turn your face there ! ' ' : 
get out ! v. mi-arale [ . V . ]. 
gb-aro ['J ye [J] to look after; 
ogb-aro ye tte '] he is look- 
ing after me; okpia na m-obo 
gua gb-aro y-e(3i n-arhie m 

rhie S*[J.;j\.:SSJ] this 
man knows very well how to 
look after things given to him 
to keep, gbe ['] asa ["] to 
whip; Dgb-q;-asa [/"] he whip- 
ped him. gb-ebibi [V.] to 
dazzle; onwe gb-ebibi y-oo-aro 

o-izsy-ere [..V.../V.] "the 
sun dazzled my eyes when I had 
looked at it for some time", 
gb-edae [ #> f] y-uhuou [/J "to 
make a charm on the head " : to 
make a charm with beads that 
is tied to one's hair (or applied 
to the beads?); it ensures long 
life; used by the chief Esogba 
[*/]. gb-ehe [\] to fish; cf 
igbehE, DgbehE [...]. gb-erh- 
erh§ [/J to fell a tree by setting 
fire to it. gb-esa [/] 1-abo 
(la [']) [.*] to take somebody's 
side in a dispute (without being 
concerned oneself) ; ogb-esa 1-abo 
lel-£e [.' * \ he took his side 
and followed him; cf igbesa 

[...]. gb-eoi [/\] na [*] to 
sacrifice something to a god; 
igb-eCi n-£fit3i [/•/.] I killed 
something for a juju. gb-exaxa 
[ / . ] to make a sign. gb-Eb£ [\] 
to play the ebg [ J (state- 
sword); this is done by chiefs 
when saluting the Dba at festivals 
(ugie [..]). gb-£hu(pf.) ['•] to. 

be hollowed out by some insect 
and thus made useless; of corn 
and beans; oka na gb-£hu, Eyi- 
gi-are, sokpa maxu-ofe n-oxoxD 

I J.'' '*././.] " this com 
is useless, it is no longer edible, 

unless we strip it off for the 
chickens ' ' . gb-£te [ * * ] to shoot 
at a target ; to have a shooting 
contest ; gi w ayagb-£te ['J"] 
let us go and shoot at the target ! 
gb-Et$-£ho (eoe [..], £ho [/]) [./] 
to let out (something that 
was meant to be secret); cf 
ogbdSsho [....]. gb-iba [ " ] to 
make fun of a man (ya ['] 
gb-iba ["]; v. gb-akiy£y£ ["/], 
gb-ogi£ [.']); oy-egb-Ere gb-iba 
[ he is making fun of 

himself, gb-igiagia [ . ] to stamp 
with the feet and clap hands 
(to spur on and accompany 
masquerade dancers) (v. Dvia 
[/]). gb-igiaw£ [/J to step; 
ogb-igiaw£ lele ve [.*'../] he 
marched behind me; cf gis 
n,ow£[..]. gb-iguma [ . ] to 
pant, grunt, e.g. when carrying 
a heavy load ; ih£ n-omu xua-re 
gbe, t-oyigb-iguma o-ol-oke (la 

f]) [.:%/••••.*...•] "the load 
he has taken (i.e. he carries) is 
too heavy for him, he is panting 
climbing (passing) the hill", 
gb-igbo [",] to spin a top. gb- 
iro [ ' J to ask, pose a riddle (for 
somebody : na [ ' ]) ; omu w iro n- 
igbe ns [/"/%] he guessed the 
riddle I asked him. gb-irhu [ \ ] 
to give shade. gb-ixiatx> [ ' . . ] to 
pound bcro. gb-ite [ " ] to make 
a rough clearing in the bush, 
e.g. for a telegraph-line; v. fie 
[J] (for farming purposes, in- 
volves a much more thorough 
clearing), gb-iyare to 

welcome in triumph (a warrior 
returning from a war), gb-ize 
['J to form, bake an ize [\] 
("rice") cake (round or oval 
in a mould); gb-ize me de ['/.] 
"bake a rice cake for me to 
buy"; v. ma 4 [']. gb-obodo 
['..] to pirouette, gb-obo [/] 
yobotidi [.,"] to have an un- 
lucky hand (in handling some- 
thing) . gbe ['] oda [ " ] to kick ; 
ogbe o-oda [/"] he kicked me 
(man, horse, or cow), gb-ogie 
[/] to make fun; to make fun 
of: ya ['] gb-ogie [/]; v. gb- 
akiyeye [**.'], gb-iba [*']. gb- 
ohio [/] to bore a hole, gb-okl 
[*J to perform okl [*;]; also: 
fToki [ *.]. gb-oroyo [*..] to 
spread mud on a timber-track, 
gb-osiko [ '] to notch timber, 
gb-oto [\f"down", lit. "hit 
ground" is used as second part 
of verbal combinations, e.g. in 
erha ni de gb-oto [.'"•..] that 
tree fell down ; if & fi w erha gb-oto 
[' "••J they cut trees down. 

gb-oxoxo [ . / . 3 S ie [ * ] to burst 
with laughter: lit. "to hit with 

one's knuckles (and) laugh", 
gb-ofo [/] to become wet; to be 
wet; ukpo oe na gb-ofo [..'. '] 
"this, my cloth, is (has become) 
wet", gb-okan-abe [.."\J to 
have a serious quarrel with some- 
body (idiomatic) . gb-orho [ * . ] to 
be muddy, gb-ovo [/] to be 
jealous; ogb-ovo Ce [...'] she is 
jealous of me. gbe [*] ovo [/] 
to make somebody jealous; eoi 
n-uru ne gbe o-ovo [.. 
what you have done for her 
makes me jealous, gb-ubi ["J 
to slap; ogb-ubi y-ou-ato [/..'.] 
he slapped my face, gb-ubi [/] 
to make holes for yam-sticks 

(with the pointed stick ubi [/]). 
gb-ugbo [ " ] to do farm work (as 
one's occupation); to be a 
farmer. gb-ugb-ogi-erhS. [/**•] 
to play a certain children's game 
which consists in guessing things 
that are known to a few of the 
players only, gb-uke [ ' . ] to stamp 
one's feet (as in a special kind of 
dance) ; uke ogbe na ta [*./.. ].is 
he stamping uke there ? (The na 
is used when the speaker can see 
the man.) gb-ume [/] to rub 
oneself with camwood (which 
dyes the skin red); this is e.g. 
done by the women members of 
Oxwahe [,J,] at the ikpoleki 
[ # \J festival, and by men, at 
the agwe [ m . ] (new-yam festival 
at the Eguae [..]); ogb-ume n- 
oxwahe [,'* .J.) she has rubbed 
(herself with) camwood for 
Oxwahe. gb-uzebu [ . . ' ] to dance 
the Uzebu [_*] dance (gbe ['] is 
also used with the names of 
other dances, e.g. gb-akaba [\J, 
or gb-ukpukpe ["J "to dance 
a war-dance 

gbe 2 [ * ] a verb indicating that an 
action is performed intensively 
or extensively, or that a certain 
state exists to a high degree 
("much", "well"); always fol- 
lowing the main verb ; ogw-ob-ifS 
gbe [/•/] (gwe [']) he is much 
(well) acquainted with them; 
ogw-ob-ifa gbe [..V] some- 
thing like : he is always in their 
company. (The verbal character 
of gbe is shown by the different 
intonation in these two forms, 
the pf. and ipf .) 

gbe 3 ["] (1) to be rotten; ataoe 
na gbe [../.*%] this meat is 
rotten (so that only parts of it 
are eatable). (2) ogbe [,"\] also 


means something like "it is 
gone" in the case of something 
that one takes without intending 
to return it, e.g. from a debtor. 

gbe 4 ['] to break (of day) ; ede gbe 
[ '•] day is breaking (this sen- 
tence is also used as a name). 

gbe [J] (i) to cross; to pass; in 
gbe [/] ra [J] ; ogbe ra xia o- 
imi-OE n-owie [.V/*/] he 
was passing along when I saw 
him this morning; gbe ra n- 
uys^iye 6e pass with- 

out looking at me! Also "be- 
sides": os-ifa w eha n-ir-eoa gbe 
ra-re (se [']) there 
were three of them there besides 
him (lit. "it reached them 
three. . ."). Also used as second 
verb in verbal combinations, 
imparting a motion across some- 
thing, i [*], vl [']. (2) to 
bar by putting something in 
("across") the way, e.g. (a) to 
show that a certain plot has been 
chosen for clearing a farm ; it is 
done by putting two crossed 
planks on a small round cleared 
spot in the bush; (b) to debar 
access to one's wife by using a 
certain "medicine": uxuou n- 
aya gb-oxuo [ ... .V J medicine 
taken to "cross" a woman, 
gbe [/] ode [/] to bar the road; 
to bar one's way, or, plan; 
uhuou n-ogie re gbe o-od-eoi 

n-itetaru-re [..."••/./".] the 
message which he sent prevented 

me from doing the thing that 

I was going to do to-day. gb- 

otoe [/.] xe [J] "to bar ground 

wait": to put poison (efua [,*]) 

into somebody's path in order 

that he may contract a disease, 

etc. ; ogb-otoe x-ore " he 

poisoned the ground waited for 

him": he put poison in his 
path; v. fi ['] xe [J]. 
gbg [ * ] (1) to cut off ; Dgb-ifuou [.*..] 
he is cutting grass; igb-o§ [/J/] 

I cleaned it (e.g. a coconut 
from the surrounding fibres). 
(2) to carve (with an agb§ ["]); 
ogb-Ivi [ / J he is carving a coco- 
nut. (3) to write; in gb-ebe [/] 
lit. "to write leaf": to write a 
book, letter, etc. ; ogb-ebe gu t5e 
['• '] he wrote to me; cf. 
ogbebe [...]. (4) to make a 
mark; in gbg [*] orhue [ # J to 
mark with chalk; infants are 
marked with chalk from a few 
days after their birth up to the 
age of about seven months. 
Iterat. gMne [/] to mark the 
face with tattooings. 

gbi [ ' ] to be blunt (of a knife) ; eto 
na gbi, n-uyab w e re [ . J . "% '} ' / ] 
this knife is blunt, (so that) you 
should go (and) sharpen it (and) 
come ! abe na f £ko gbi, we kweb w 
e yi V\.J\\y] this knife is 
getting blunt, have you really 
sharpened it? 

gbidii [ . . ] describes the sound of 
something heavy falling into 
water, also that of a bather 
jumping flat into water; v. 

gbiyidi [...], sugy [']. 

gbigbi [/] to spread a rumour; 
if a gbigbi ota ni xia ['.... V # ] 
lit. "they are spreading that 
story along"; cf. ogbigbi 

gbigbigbi [ _ t ] describes a strong 
wind or a tornado, the rushing 
of a river, and knocking at the 
door; ohoho gbigbigbi [./...] 
there is a strong wind blowing. 

gbiyidi [...]' describes the sound 
of long, but not heavy objects, 
e.g. firewood, falling to the 
ground, also that of a wrestler 



being dropped down by his 
partner; ode gbiyidi [ # \ . .] it fell 
(e.g. the firewood) ; v. gbidii [.J. 

gbimm [J describes the sound of 
a gun going off in a room (e.g. 
by accident). 

gbina i [ '] to fight; wayegbina 
[."YYf don't you (pi.) fight! 
ogu ue gbina [.'*.'] he fought 
with me; cf. ugbinaoe [/%.], 
igblna [...]; v. xo [J] (to wage 
war; stronger than gbina). 

gbina 2 [/] to seek shelter with 
somebody; igbina w a [..V] I 
seek shelter with you ! 

gb-Ifufiu [•..]; c/.gb8["]. 

gbodoo ["] wide; broad (not as 
much as nyamafa [...]); used of 
something that is extensive, 
deep or long as well, as roads, 
rivers, ponds, and spaces; ooee 

gbodoo [ . V * ] it is ver Y w ^ e I 
cf. gbodoo [..]; v. gbadaa [••], 
gbadaa [ t J . 

gbodoo [ J broad; used of the full 
moon; uki na use gbodoo 

the moon is very 
broad; cf. gbodoo ["]. 

gbokoo [••] tall and a little stout ; 
of a human being; used with 
ye [']; v. gbohuu [••]. 

gboo [' ]. wide; used with the verb 
rh& 0] "to open"; cf. gbo- 
doo ["]. 

gborogboro [ — ] loud and clearly 
audible; used with the verb 
gua [J]. 

gb-otoe [7.] xe [J]; cf. gbe [J], 

gbo [']" to fell trees on a farming 
plot ; all in a heap, while to [ ' ] 
means "to fell single picked 
(timber) trees"; cf. egbo [/] 

gbo i [J] to bark, of a dog, or 
leopard; v. wowowo 

gbo 2 [J] to cut a plant and re- 
plant it; also, to take a cutting 

and plant it; cf. gbo ["]; v. ko 

gbohuu [-] tall and fat; of a 
human being; verb: ye [*]; v. 
gbokoo [••]. 

gboo [J looking a-gape; always 
implying "foolishly", and there- 
fore worse than suu [*]. 

gbukegbuke [ — ] describes a 
smell like that of the seed of the 
ekpekukpeku [ m ] tree out of 
which rat-poison is prepared 
(the smell causes a man to 
vomit); verb: wia [J], 

gbuuu [J describes a smell like 
that of corn (oka [' ]) rotting in 
water as a preparation for 

akasa [..*]; owia gbuuu [.„/.] it 
smells like rotting corn. 

ya i ["] who (interrogative); 
yaru w £e ["j] who did it? ya no 
[\ ] who is it ? cf. yabi-ona [*",]. 

ya 2 (yaa) [ * ] an auxiliary verb in- 
dicating (i) the Future: oyare 
[/•] he will come; oyaade [ m 'J] 
probably he will come (as reply 
to a question); but also used 
(2) in the Progressive : oyanwina 
[ * '] he is working, and (3) in 
the Imperative: yanwina [*/] 
work! (in the latter case, the 
form with added ya- was said to 
be used to a man who is a little 
way off, while nwina [ # J was 
said to be used to a man near by) . 

ya 1 [J] to warm oneself, in 
ya w erhe [ / J to warm oneself at 
a fire. 

ya 2 [J], [J an auxiliary verb 
used in conditional sentences; 
with a low-tone pronoun it in- 
dicates a real condition, e.g. oyare 
[ # /] if he comes; with a high 
tone it is used in the apodosis 
of hypothetical clauses, e.g. 

oyare ['/] . . ., he would have 

yS ['] to cry at the slightest 
rebuke, of children. 

Y a [J] to be dear, expensive; oya 
gbe [ t J • ] it is very dear ; axie ya 
[/J "may (your) selling be 
dear": a greeting to traders; cf. 
Yor. nwo [J. 

yabi-ona ["'.] " who has borne " : 
the fifth generation of de- 
scendants, the last generation a 
man can see (such as e.g. the 
long-lived Azaka [..']), but 
whom he can no longer identify; 
hence the name ; v. iwu [ ] ; eye 
[/]; ihiehie ['/]; (e)sakpafeyodi 

yae [J] to share; to divide; if a 
ya-uzo [*..".] they divided the 
antelope; if a yae n-eCi [\,'\] 
they are sharing the thing; 
nanaya-ei5i [.'.."%] " dividing 
things": division (in arith- 
metic) ; v. toe© [ .' ] ; ya-ka (oka 
[.']) [.'] "to share turns": to 
do a thing in turns; obkpa 
yaka ["••.] the police changed 

yayaaya [...] very hot (of the 
weather) ; ede n-ere ru (or, ye [']) 
yayaaya [ # . V. . . ] it is very hot 

yarao ['*] a salutation used to- 
wards chiefs (at any time); 
it may contain ro [ > ], mean- 
ing something like " may you be 
there", and referring to long 
life(?); v. (e)doo [•]. 

ye [J] to look; oye tte [./] he is 
looking at me. ye [J] le [/] ga 
[/] to look around ; oye le ga w egbe 
[.)...'] ^ e looked around, y- 
uye [ .'] to look at a show (i.e. 
usually a dance); lare n-imu w e 
X-uye [/•;;] lit. "come, that 

I may carry you to look at the 
dance" (to a small child) ; c/.yeye 
UJY> u * e [.']; uyegbe [...]. 

yeye [J J] to see unexpectedly 
(v. A. Biogr.); cf. ye [J]. 

ye [ ' ] particle used in the negative 
imperative and subjunctive; 
yeru^ee [ u '\] don't do it! yeyo 
[*\] don't go! 

ye i [ J ] to fornicate ; cf. oyee [ , . ] . 

ye 2 [J] to feed; occurs in 
Dxwahe [J,] song 7; also in 
t-urami-egbe ya y-ore ["•.."./,] 
lit. "may you get body to (take) 
feed it": may you be fit to 
bring it (a child) up properly! 
(a blessing given to a woman 
after delivery, like om-oyo [."%.])• 

yeye [/] half-way; incompletely 
(occurs in a proverb) . 

yereyereyere [ \."] describes a 
stealthy way of walking like 
that of a spy, with varying 
speed and frequent looking 
round ; oxia yereyereyere [.*••.,"] 
he walks like a spy. 

yi an auxiliary used in several 
ways, especially (1) following 
the auxiliary ke [ ' ] which links 
up facts ("and then. . ."); oke- 
yiru^ee [. \] "and he was 
doing it"; okeyiru w ee [//%] 
"and then he did it". (2) in 
temporal clauses: oyis-eoa (se 
□) [."%/>] or [/.M "when 
he had arrived there." (3) in the 
apodosis of a conditional period. 
(4) after a' negation, meaning 
"no longer": eyiru w ee 
he no longer does it; cf yu. 

yidiyidi L...J big (of parts of the 
body, . like arms and calves, 
thighs); occasionally gidigidi is 
said to be heard, which is 

wrong; oye yidiyidi [/ ] it is 




yitiyitf [....] (i) describes a blazing 
fire; erhg ba yiriyiri [.."%....} 
the fire blazes up; v. wowowo 
[...].• (2) hot (not as hot as 
giogiogio [ # # J ; used e.g. of a pot 

on a fire); oto yiriyiri t." ] ^ 

is very hot. 
Y° 1 [J] M to circle (of a hawk, 
etc.) ; eyodi yayo yo yo re o-od- 

uxuou [*..W..\.] a hawk was 
circling to and fro in the sky. 
(2) to sell goods without a stall : 
to hawk (cf. iyo [.%]). 

yo 2 [/] to worship as a god; 
also yo w ebo [ / J ; cf. eyo [ . . ]. 

yoyo [/] to live nomadically ; to 
have no " settled " dwelling-place 
(as e.g. Hausa traders); oyoyo 
xia [./*] he is leading a vagrant 
life; cf. yo 1 [J]. 

y° [J] to make a feast (eating- 
feast); dey-uyayo y-o n-ima 

dogu w enwina [W\^* # \] Ht. 
"if you will make an eating- 
feast for it, that we shall come 
and work with you " : . . . then we 
shall come ... (if agricultural help 
is not paid for, an eating-feast 
is given to the helpers) ; ayore-re 

uxurhuxurhu [.J J...'..] we 
have feasted to-day in abund- 
ance (so that something had to 
remain) ; cf. yoyo [/] (?) ; eyo [/ ]. 
yoyo [/] to rejoice; to be glad; 
oyoyoe [. he was glad; oyoyo 
yo [ '\] he is glad about it; 

yu a variant of the auxiliary yi, 
used after the 2nd pers. sgl., e.g. 

uyuru^se [*/"%] vou should do it. 
y-uye [/]; c/.'ye [J]. 

ha [ * ] (1) to bore a hole ; to pierce. 
(2) to penetrate. (3) to give a 
sudden start (cf. ha 1 [J]; v. 

tm [/]). 

ha. i[J] to frighten; okpia n-oxia 
ni ha Ce-nwa [../'•.'%] that 
man who is going (there) 
frightened me just now (con- 
tinued : ikef uf a gijji [."%."..]" and 
I gave a sudden start"); cf. ha [ ' ]. 

ha 2 [J] to pay a debt; also 
ha^ojsa [/]; oha i3-en-osa 
[,./•] he always pays me the 
debt ; the ipf . indicates that the 
payment is made continuously, 
i.e. in rates. 

na 3 [J] W to m ake a parcel of 
leaves, e.g. food-stuff that easily 
breaks into small crumbs as 
ize[* ],eooxo [/Y],akasa [..']> 
uloka [..J, etc.; oha w uloka gu 
6s de [ , / 1 ] he parcelled "corn 
cake" for me to buy. ha w ibo 
[/J to hide some object in a 
box in order to make somebody 
guess it as a test of his tele- 
pathic gifts ; oha w ibo y-ekpoki na 

[..W.l ne P ut something 
secret into this leather box ; v. 
sa w ibo [/J. (2) to tie; in 
ha w ema [ / J and ha^inya [ . . * ] to 
tie yams to the yam-stack (eru 
[.']); i.e. they are tied to the 
uga [ # J which is part of eru; 
v. n-ema ["J. 
ha 1 [J] to stand sloping, at an 
angle (but not crooked in itself) ; 
erha na ha [ m \J] this tree stands 
at an angle; owa na ha ['./] 
this house hangs over. Idiom.: 
ame (or, eoare [./]) ha v>z [./'] 
the water (or, food) has gone 
the wrong way (in drinking or 
eating, i.e. into the windpipe), 
iro ha-{e [..'•] "thinking is at 
an angle with him": he is em- 
barrassed, puzzled, confused; cf 


ha 2 [J] (1) to dress up as a mas- 
querade-dancer; (2) to dress up, 

in a more general sense ; cf. sha 


hano [.'] to pick, sort out, e.g. 
good grains, beans, etc. from a 
heap; han-ihstfc n-oma u-uw- 

iheoE na [/'../'V.] P ick the 
good beans out of these beans ! 

haoa [.'] to be pregnant; ots (3e 
haoa [/'/] my ots is pregnant. 

hawa [.*] in hawa yo hawa re 
[/*/'] to be restless (e.g. of a 
nian who has lost something) . 

he i ['] to refuse; he ['] y-oto 
['J (a) to refuse somebody's 
company; (b) to divorce; oh-se 
y-oto [,\] (a) he refused his 
company; (b) he divorced her. 
he ['] y-o [\] lit. "to refuse 
(somebody) in it" (same as fl 
['] y-o ["%]), to leave in the lurch, 
e.g. in a palaver. 

he 2 ["] an auxiliary verb in- 
dicating (a) that the main action 
is performed in spite of many 
obstacles or reluctance: "at 
last " ; it seems to be used mostly 
with following yi [J, but it is 
also found with ra ['], i.e. in 
the ingressive form; iheyiru^ee 
[ /."M I have done it at last, 
or, after all; iheraru^Ee [.**"\] 
now at last I am going to do it. 
(b) when following ma ['], the 
negative particle of the pf., 
it means "not yet": omahere 
[' ' he has not yet come. 

he [/] eni [.J to give a name 
(i.e. christen); ohe 6-eni [,J\] 
(also he [']) he gave me a name; 
m-oh-sr-eni o-adabi-oe 
it was I who gave him a name 
at the same time when he was 
born; cf. iheni [.. J. 

heuu [".] an exclamation of 

heoeheoe [ ' * " ] a bird whose cry 

is much heard, but which " never 
comes to the main road"; the 
cry is usually heard dying down 
or receding into the distance, 
hs i [J] to carry (many things; v. 

vb U));cf.hz2[j](}). 

he 2 [J] in hs yo he re [J J ] to 
breathe heavily; cf. hews i [/]. 

he 3 [J] a particle closing a 
sentence or clause opened by 
o- " how " ; o-uwa oie hs [ # J J J] 
how have you (pi.) slept? v>- 
Ey-aye hz [,/' J] what (how) is 
the time? 

hs* Pv] no; v. mm eo [**]• 

hfihl [/] to level ground for the 
purpose of house-building ; oh§h- 
& L.J] he levelled it. h2h- 
iinu [7.*] "to level mouth": 
to come to an agreement or 
decision ; if a heh-iinu [''/"] they 
have come to an agreement; cf. 

ihehunu .[ ] . 

h-£k£ u m y t hf ho [J]. 

hfiko a variant of the verb 

feko'[.^]; heko yagua [.V] 

speak gently ! 
hEnedE [ ' " ] safely ; easily. 
h-m[\];cf Ji5[*]. 
h£W£ i [/] to breathe; ohew- 

ESEse n - uysgi - afiama fia^,a 

[...'•'. ..J.J] ne breathes pro- 
perly so that you need not 
be afraid; lit. "so that you 
must not allow pulse to beat 
you " ; ohEwe y-oto hswe y-uxuflu 

[..' .J ."..] ne * s (heavily) draw- 
ing breath down and up ": he is 
breathing with difficulty, as e.g. 
a man suffering, from asthma. 
hEWE 2 [/] to refrain from doing 
a certain thing; hswE re [./] 
don't do it! lit. something like 
" leave off ! " ; used when an 
order previously given is re- 
voked ; h£W£ ! ysyiyo [/*."%] 

stop ! don't go 1 otexia, iyigu w ee 
gua, onahewE [/'/ 'Y/"V"] he 
was about to go, when I talked 
to him: he then gave it up; v. 
ko w Etf [./]. 
hi ['] to pray Osa [ #> ] and 8hi 
[. J for one's well-being during 
the next reincarnation (ari-aoehe 
["']); occurs in a proverb; cf. 
£hi'[ ]. 

ML/] (i) to climb; ihi w oke [,..*] 
I am climbing a hill ; ihi w uhut3- 
erha [./*."] I climbed up a tree. 
(2) of new moon: to come out 
for the first time; uki mahehl 
[,/7J the moon has not yet 

come out. (3) to ride a horse; 
ihi_gsi [..*'] I am riding a horse. 
(4) to show, of tribal marks 
which stand up a little from the 
surrounding skin; iwu w £fe hip 
[.. .A] his tribal marks show. 
Idiom.: hi oha [_'] to give 
presents to one's superior, also 
to the Oba; v. imuoha [_J (to 
the Dba only); z-igwe [*J (wife 
to her husband, man to his 
superior, e.g. to the chief of the 
quarter) ; et5i n-iyaya hi w oha ef- 

iho na [...'... V . ] " the things 
which I will take to present are 
the ones I am looking for now". 

hi [\| second part of verbal com- 
binations implying the meaning 
"away", "out of", v. mu 1 [*]. 

hia 1 [J] to scrape; hia w erha na 
n-ori-Esese [.. /./ '] "scrape this 
plank that it may be properly 
smooth!" hia [J] kua ['] to 
scrape off. 

hia 2 [J] to try to keep up 
one's social position, or one's 
health ; to struggle against diffi- 
culties; to strive one's utmost; 
Erhei5g_e(3i, oyehia [JJ..~\. JJ] 
though he has nothing, he is still 

"trying" (to keep up appear- 
ances); uhia S£ n£ [,J,'] you 
have "tried" enough; e.g. if one 
has been offered enough by a 
poor host, or, if somebody has 
tried to give help, but without 

hia 1 [J] to be bright and clean; 
only used of something that has 
been washed; ukp5 na hiafg 
[.J. J.] this cloth is bright 
(after being washed) ; cf. uhiao£ 
[,%.], hua 1 [J]; v. nwanwa- 
nwa [...]. 

hia 2 [J] to ask for a sacrifice by 
means of an oracle; of a god; 
v. ese [..]. 

hie 1 [J] to blow on a fire; ohi- 
erhg [ m J\] he blew on the fire ; 
ohi-£re [ t / J he is blowing on it. 

hie 2 [J] (1) to put a ceiling on a 
room (but " to roof" is dovz [/]). 
(2) to ridge a roof. 

hiehie (also hiehiere [J J % ] and 
Egh. Hist, hietehiere [}'\,]) 
[J J] a t all; eroo hiehie 
[J' J J J.] there are none at all ! 

or, he is not at all there ! 
hiS [*] to be prosperous, wealthy; 

ohig ne-s£se [/,'*] he is very 

hi£ [J] (1) to deceive. (2) to fail; 

of charms, 
highighig [ " * ] describes a high and 

faint voice ; used with the verb 

gua U~\. 
higboo [••] tall and fat, same as 

gbohuu [*•]; used with the verb 

y e [ ]i *\gbokoo [ *•]. 
hiyahiya [ ] trembling; of. old 

people,, or nervous trembling; 

used with the verb gwo [ ' ] ; not 

as strong as zzzezs [...], 
hihifi [/] to upset; v. ni ['] for 

a canoe ; ohihi-oe n-owie [. / V '] 

he upset it this morning, hihis 


[/] kua [*] to upset so that the 
contents are thrown, or poured, 
out (e.g. a bucket of water). 

hiihii [ • ' ] misty; only used of the 
mist in the early morning, not 
of the mist during the harmattan 
which may last up to 8.30 a.m.; 
used with ru [ ' ] . 

hio [*] to be proud (in a bad 
sense; zs 2 ['] is used in a good 
sense); o-ohio ba [J* J] what is 
he proud of? 

hio 1 [J] to urinate. 

hio 2 [J] (1) to cut a straight line 
into something, e.g. to slit the 
peel of a plantain in order to 
take it off more easily before 
roasting the plantain; (but "to 
split through" is va [)]) ; also in 
Lio^iwu [ ] to mark the de- 
signs of tattooings on the skin 
(previous to the actual process) ; 
(2) in hio w (o)to [.'J to dig a 

hiorp [ .* ] to drag somebody on the 
ground, v. Uke keoe arhuaro; 
ohiorp ue [_'*] he dragged me 
(along on the ground) . 

hiofo [/] to breathe heavily. 

hioia [/] to swell; obo ve hioias 
[ m Y hand is swollen; cf, 

uhi(3iat3e [/\]; v. hue [JJ. 

hmmm [J describes the noise of 
distant rainfall, or of a distant 
waterfall ; ams rho hmmm [ . . y\ ] 
it is raining far away. 

ho [J] (1) to look for; to want; 
iho w ere [ # / J I want it. ho [J] 
sue [..] to offend; oho o-eoef/J 
he always offends me. ho w Eue 
[/ ] to love; to like; oho w £Ce oe 

[ '] he likes me. ho [J] 

beku [/] to look for something 
without finding it ; oho w £re bzku 
[/"•/] he looked for it, but he 
could not find it. (2) to have 

sexual intercourse ("with" is 
expressed by the direct ob- 
j ect) . 

hoho [ '] to blow (wind); idiom.: 
hoh-oto [/.] lit. "to blow 
the ground": to dig a grave; 
ifa yihoh-oto, akeyimu w £ y-o 

when they had dug 
a grave, he was then put into 
it" (possibly also ifa yi- ["."%]). 

ho [ ' ] to lay eggs ; usually without 
ek£ [.%]; oxoxo na hoe [.J.*\] 
the hen has laid (an egg). 

ho ['] (1) to hear; iho-e u-unu w 8f e 

[.*...'.] " 1 heard ft from his 
mouth": I heard it from him. 

h-£0£ [*.] lit. "to hear word"; 

gi-ah-£i3£ [ / \ ] " let hear word " : 

shut up! (2) to understand; 

oh-£do [ . ] he understands Bini ; 

iho w £ [.'.] I understand it. 

ho [J] (i) to wash; ho w ukpo [/.] 

to wash clothes; ho w eto [_'] to 

wash one's hair; idiom.: ho w £ze 

[. .] <<to wasn river", a method 
of fishing, v. irewe ["J. (2) to 
drink, and bathe in, blood, as 
done by the chief Dsa [ ' J during 
a certain sacrifice. (3) to collect 
and mix mud, in ho w ekg [ / ] 
(same as ru w ek£ [** ]), also h-£kg 

ho [J] to grow (of hair) ; hu w ede 

[.. ] " t0 S row § re y hair": to 
become old. 

ho w uro [.*.], also h£ w uro, to be 
full, of the moon ; cf. uro [ m # ] ; 
v. ko-ro [J,], v£wae ['%]. 

hoo£ [/] to brush oneself or some- 
thing as a means of purification, 
e.g. after a breach of taboo; 
hoo-egbe [./] to purify oneself 
by brushing; hot3-owa [./] to 
purify a house; hot)-£oo [/.] to 
purify a village; cf. ihooegbe 



h u [ ] (*) t° foam; ohu sdsdsd 
[ \ _] it is foaming a great deal, 
hu ['] ekpa [/] to make sick; 
to nauseate, e.g. a bad smell or 
taste ; not used metaphorically ; 
mu fua-y-ohu 6-ekpa [,/...'] 
take (it) away, for it makes me 
sick ! (2) to grow quickly (of a 
child) . 

hu ['] to feel sleepy (impersonal 
use); oue hu oe [//] I feel 

hu ['] nwa ['] to be, become 
quiet (of children: to stop 
crying); ohu nwa [/*] he is 
quiet ; he has stopped crying ; v. 
g-unu [/], h3 [*]. 

huS 1 [J] (1) to be, become, clean ; 
ukp3 na huafg [././.] this 
cloth is clean; oko na hu& gbe 
[/.'•] this fellow is very clean, 
neat (also hua [J])', ukp5 n- 
oma hua t-urhua£ [.."*•>] it is 
a dirty cloth that you wear. 
(2) to be holy; Orhio N-ohuafg 
[ '} ] the Holy Ghost; cf. hia 

hua 2 [J] to make a sacrifice 
prepared with new yam as is 
done to every god at the end 
of the agwe [..]. 

hue[^] to swell ; owe n-imu gb-et3i 
huere [.."A/.] lit. "my foot 
which I took to hit something 
is swollen"; cf. uhueue [.%.]» 
v. hiuia [ *]. 

hu-ede [./]; cf. ho [J]. 

hu£ [j] (1) to wake somebody up; 
hug Ce u-sd-agbe wake 
me up when day is breaking. 
(2) to restore somebody from 
a faint; m-ohu-ofg u-okuote 
[J / 1 / J it was I who restored 
him when he had fainted; v. rhio 

hu w E6£ [/.]; cf. ho [J]. 

huefi [•••] very deep and narrow; 
e.g. of a ditch, or of a narrow 
passage through the bush, the 
entrance of which is like a hole, 
e.g. an ega ifi [ "•]; used with 

ye f]. 

huhu [/] to have a surfeit; to 
have too much of a good thing ; 
ohuhu 5e. [./*] I am sick of the 
sight of it; v. xS 2 [J], 

huhuhxi [*/] describes an in- 
distinct muttering or grumbling ; 
used with the verb gwi [ ' ] . 

huhuhu [_J describes a bad 
smell, like that of a dead rat e.g. ; 
used with the verb wia [J] \ v. 
zuzuzu [...]. 

hurpo, huupo [_] describes an 
extremely lazy way of walking, 
as well as a "dull" appearance 
generally, used e.g. with the verb 
xia [']; cf. zupzup [....]; v. 
mitaS [..]. 

i- [ J conjunctive pronoun of the 
1st pers. sgl. 

in [/J describes the cry of the 
monkey ogl [/] (the I is rather 
open ; the second one very high 
in pitch, and the last one, very 
low); otu HI [//J he is crying 
(of an ogl-monkey); v. am [J, 
mmm [J. 

iba ["] (1) fumbling about e.g. 
with food when without ap- 
petite. (2) ib-£zo [" " ] a difficult 
palaver (i.e. one full of contra- 
dicting statements) . (3) making 
fun of somebody, v. gbe 1 [*]; 
(gb-ogi£ [/]). 

iba [\] mud bench, or niche 
serving as a couch; iba^ore, 
ibaare [ ] , [ * " ] mud benches 
in front of the house, beside the 
door. iba w £ri£ ['*'*] couch un- 
der the eaves at od-£ri£ [/•] (the 

women's apartment), ibaaru^ 
efiCi (aro [..]) ["".J niches 
containing the ancestors' shrines, 
viz. ibaaru w erha ["'"] niche of 
the father's shrine, and iba- 
aru w iye ["***] niche of the 
mother's shrine. 

ibaba [...] bracelet worn by 
princesses; v. uoi [/]. 

ibaema [ ## J planting small yam- 
poles (eye [/]); cf ba 2 [J], 
ema [.J. 

ibaigba [...] "sticking (in) a 
thorn": act of proclaiming a 
woman as the Dba's wife, or, 
a boy as omada [...]. For- 
merly, the people of the Dba's 
household could proclaim any 
attractive woman (even though 
married) to be an oloi [ * * ] in the 
Dba's harem. By the words of 
this proclamation she was fixed 
to the spot where she stood or 
went ; then, a cloth was brought 
from her home, and she was led 
to the Eguae [..]; cf. ba 2 [J], 
igba [..]. 

ibako [...] hunting game in 
surrounded areas of the forest; 
v. ukpeku [./]. 

ibalegbe 1 [....] quick temper; 
rage; cf. bab 1 [/],egbe [.*];». 

OWOWO [...]. 

ibalegbe »[....] (sgl. o-) age-group 
among Dxwahe members corre- 
sponding to iroyae [...]; cf. 
ibalegbe 1 [....]. 

ibaro, ibaaro [..J (great) suffer- 
ing (Prayer book, p. 69) ; cf. ba 3 

ibata [*..] shoe; boot; ibat-ame 
'['*..] rain-boot ; ibat-obo [ ' * ' ] 
glove (lit. "hand-shoe"); worn 
by Dvia [/]-masqueraders; cf. 
Yor. bata [..]; Port. bota. 

ibi [.'] (1) charcoal. (2) soot: 

ibi w axe [/'•]" soot of pot " ; ibi 
bu gbe t>egb-axe na [. *..*'.] 
' ' soot is very much on the body 
of this pot": this pot is very 
sooty; v. axuawa ["*']. 

ibis ["] (1) intestines. (2) tyre of 
a bicycle : ib-ikske [".']. 

ibie x [.'] (1) young people. (2) 
servants. The word has been 
found only as part of the 
following words ibieruya [./.], 
ibi-erie [.*'*] a gang of men 
cleaning the grass at the erie; 
ibi-ukoni [."..], and, possibly, 
iyibierie [//]. It does not seem 
to occur alone ; cf. bis [ ' ] ; ibieka 


ibie 2 [/] a secret language used 
by the members of the Iwebo 
[.*%.] soci^y. Said to contain 
many Portuguese words. 

ibiedo ['"] son of a slave (i.e. 
himself a slave) ; cf. ibieka [ . J\ ] . 

ibieka (pi., sgl. oooxa [/.]) 

(1) (small) children. (2) servants; 
wives ("people over whom one 
has full right"); ibiek-iy-oba 

the maids of Iyoba, the 
Dba's mother; she gives them in 
marriage and receives the bride- 
price for them; cf. ibie 1 [/]. 

ibisruya [_'.] "young people in 
the chamber": young men in 
service at the Eguae [, J, some 
of them being emada [ ## J (sgl. 
o-) who have been "clothed", 
i.e. finished their time as omada, 
some of them not. They are the 
younger members of Iw-£guae 
[.%.], Iw-ebo [."Yl an( * Ibiwe 

[ h J: c f- ibi£ [ .* L re 1 [ ' ], uya [ \ ]. 

ibiriki [*••.] (1) brick. (2) mile- 
stone. (3) mile. Engl. 

ibi-ukoni [."..] (pi., also used as 
sgl.) idiomatic expression for 
oleoi [ ## J "cook" and helpers 

in the kitchen generally; some 
chiefs have three or four people 
working in the kitchen, pound- 
ing fufu, cooking, etc.; cf. ibis 
[/], ukoni [...]. 

Ibiwe [."%.] one of the three 
societies forming the Dba's 
household; it was instituted by 
the Dba Ehggbuda [.".], and it 
takes care of the 8ri£ [ / ] , the ha- 
rem. Part of the members comes 
from the maternal family of the 
Oba; its senior chiefs are Osodi 
[\ J and Ins ['*]. In Ibiwe [.%.] 
the itusrifi [ mm J are the youngest 
age-grade; v. iw- [J. 

ibobo [_J a thin skin, not as 
strong as ikpakpa [*/]; ibob-ehg 
[ " ] skin of a fish (but: ikpakp- 
eh§ [*/.] scales); ibob-inya [//] 
yam-peel (but ikpakp-inya ["/*] 
is used for yam peel with some 
yam adhering to it); yabol- 
ibob-erha y-eua na (bolo [/]) 

[.'../] Peeled the bark 
of the tree at this spot? 

ibowa [...] building a house (or 
houses); cf. bo i ['], owa [/]. 

ibokpo ['. .] tent; ibokp-oha [*"/] 
"bush- tent": camp-tent; ibokp- 
imu£ [ ] mosquito net ; cf Yor. 
ibokpo [•..]. 

ibu ['.] a tree, Conopharyngia 
pachy siphon and penduliflora ; 
ibu n-owee [".%.] "male ibu" 
("fruit a little smaller than a 
tennis ball" ; watery latex) ; ibu 
n-at3e [-.%.] "female ibu" (fruit 
"a little smaller than a foot- 
ball"; milky latex). The corre- 
spondence of the Latin names is 
unknown. Bark and fruit (of 
both?) are used for medical 

ibu[.~\] confession of adultery (as 
made by a woman) ; cf. bfl 2 s 


ibude advice; cf bu 2 [/], 

ude [..]. 

ibuede [_J day fixed for some- 
thing; appointment; cf. bu 2 [/], 

£d£ [/]. 

ibuohig [ ] judgment; cf bu2 [/], 
ohiF ['*]'. 

ida [ _] a drum accompanying the 
Dba's footsteps, and also used 
by chiefs when going to an ugie 
[ . . ] , as well as by the inhabitants 
of the Ezomo's ['"] quarter 
Uzebu [_*] when dancing the 
uzsbu [_'] dance; it has a skin 
on one end only ; this is secured 
by strings fastened to the other 

idabo [ # t J act of stretching hands 
out (St Mark iv. 22) ; cf da [J], 
obo [/]. 

idada [.J,] a guess; v. mu 1 [']. 

idagbo [ t /] an open space ; ya ta w e 

y-idagbo o-odo [J* *\] go 

and spread it (a cloth) on an 
open place there (i.e. for drying 

tt >' 

idase [. ] mischievous playing 
about (by boys), e.g. playing 
with a trap, and letting it fall 
for nothing; or, playing with 
something breakable; or, carry- 
ing a load at the side of his head 
(oxi w uhuuu [/ '*.]); v. ze I [']. 

idaoeho [ ] act of listening 

(Akugbe) ; cf. dai5£ [.'], eho 1 [/]. 

ida-w£ ["%.] (1) heel. (2) ida-w-esl 
[**"] (a) heel, hoof, of horse, 
(b) a kind of grass, Bryophyllum 
pinnatwm ; used by women as a 
medicine for securing easy de- 
livery; ida ["] alone is used 
with the possessive pronoun: 
ida-f£ [V.] its hoof; cf. oda 
["], owe [.J; v. gbe 1 [*]. 

idegbe [ ] unbetrothed girl; v. 
be 2 [>']. 

ide & [ . . . ] " buyers of things " : a 
gang of the- Dbas belonging to 
the Ibiwe [^J society. They 
go about the country requisition- 
ing food for the 8guae [ # J 
against payment. Formerly this 
payment is said to have been 
very small; cf. dz ['], eoi 

ideys [\ ] a knife used in the 
kitchen and in other house-work ; 
same as e C o [..]; L.R. fig. 141. 

idi[.J grave; c/. f-idl [*J . 

Idibo [ . . . ] name of a Bini village, 
seat of an Oxwahs [ J J shrine. 

ido [/] (1) loom; v. abokpo 1 [" ]. 
ihue [ / ], erha [ / ] . (2) cobweb ; 
akpakpa du w ido [.''••.] (do [ ' ]) 
the spider has woven a cobweb. 

idobo (1) hindrance; ob- 

stacle. (2) disturbance; y£mu w 
idobo gu t3e t)-ehe n-iye 

V..J \] "do not put ob- 
stacles to (in front of) me at the 
place where I am": do not 
disturb me at my house. 

[.V] (or [/.]?) -I stand 
secretly": a very small snake, 
blue-black, with a white spot at 
each side of the head; it lies 
coiled up and does not move 
much, and runs away when 
touched, bites when trodden 
upon; very poisonous; cf. do 2 
[J], dial [*], v. enye[ "]. 
idola [*\] florin; cf. English 

idu [ \ ] wild dove ; it has a brown 
back and shining wing-feathers ; 
it is believed to use these 
feathers as a mirror in order to 
see whether anybody is fol- 
lowing it (probably because it 
pushes its head forward at every 
step, looking sideways); a dif- 
ferent kind is : idu w £gbo [ * ' * ] 
' * dove of the forest ' r ; it is bigger 


than the preceding and brown 
all over. 

idugba [ ## J dancers with rattles 
(ekasa [_]) on their feet, 
dancing ugba [ * , ] ; cf. d-ugba ['J. 

Iduo-ioi w otD [.'/..] name of a sib, 
lit. "quarter of the children of 
the ground"; its headman is 
chief Edohs [./]; one of the 
members of the Uzama [/J. 
This name is also applied to two 
quarters of Benin City, which 
they inhabit: (1) on the road 
leading to Sapele, and (2) be- 
hind Uzebu [./] on the road 
leading to 8kehua [/']. Their 
greeting is lajdu [\'];cf. iduou 
[.'.]; v. egbse [ # \|. 

iduou [ / J quarter of a ' ' town " ( the 
quarters are usually somewhat 
separate from each other, and 
each one is constituted like a 
separate village) ; d-idu(5u n-udia 
u-ou-Edo [...V*] at* which 
quarter do you live at Benin 
City? idi-ogwa n-ogbe ya [/ ' * *] 
I live at Dgwa Nogbe [ # *\ ] *( a 
subdivision of the quarter of 
Ogbe [•.]). 

if£0£ [ .J (1) arrow; ifeo-uhabo 
[ " " " • ] arrow for a bow (feather- 
ed) ; ifEo-gkpede [ ' \' ' ] arrow for 
a cross-bow (directed by a leaf 
on the arrow). (2) ifsu-ikEke 
[*".'] or, if£(3-ow-ik£k£ ["//] 
spoke of a bicycle wheel. ' (3) 
if£t5-agw£ ['\ J rib(s). 

ifi [.'] trap (general term). 

ifie [ .' ] W act of clearing a spot in 
the bush (with matchets) from 
undergrowth, previous to "burn- 
ing" it and felling the big trees 
on it; v. gbo [*]; ifie ni fo ne ta 
[ . V • > . ] is that clearing finished ? 
(2) a place thus cleared; cf. 
fie [/], ufieOe J. 


ifiema [...] planting of ikpssi 
[ ]-poles; cf. fi ['], ema2 [..]. 

ineto [...] (pi.) a band of people 
dancing naked at various ugies 
[ ]; they wear their hair in 
small plaits; cf. fi [*], eto [/]. 

ifu§ f] (i) wing (of any flying 
animal). (2) ifu-ehe ["'J find 
a fish. (3) ifu-ato [**..] eye- 
lash (es). 

ig2 [..] feather; ig-oxoho [//] 
(with a rj-like glide after the g-) 
an eagle-feather. 

igatawa [""] bucket; cf. Yor. 

garawa [•••]• 
igati [","] cassava as plant and 
(sifted) as food, v. ebobozi [...']. 
The more modern kind is 
cassava-fufu (may be mixed 
with yam) : the cassava is kept 
in water for a fortnight, then 
thoroughly washed, pounded in 
a mortar, rolled in balls and 
driedP near a fire. The black crust 
is then scraped off, whereupon 
it is cooked and pounded once 
more; cf. Hausa gati [.'].; Yor. 

gari [./]. 

igaza [ . . . ] fetters (for the feet) . 

igedu ['*"] (any) timber-tree; 
timber; igedu n-oho ["/J a big 
timber-tree, Entandrophragma 
(septentrionale, macrophyllum, 
and, rederi); cf. Yor. gedu [•']; 

v. oho ['.]. 

igggg [ " * ] small branch ; ig£g-erh& 
na nya fua [ " ' * . V] a branch of 
this tree has split off. 

igiagia [ . . . ] excited singing, cry- 
ing, and clapping hands as 
encouragement of masquerade- 
dancing and wrestling; v. gbe 1 

[*], yagbe [/]. 
igie [ # J (1) main, principal (part of 
something). (2) corner (r. exoxo 
[*••]); igi-owa [/"•] corner of a 

house (outside corner) , also : igi- 
ekg[/..]; c/.ugie[..],ogie[.J; 
v. kpataki [ . J. 

igiedudu ["••] a tree, Diospyros 
piscatorius; the ashes of the 
wood are used as ingredients in 
eoarte [..'], "native butter". 

igieoi[. . .] (1) "comparing things" : 
comparison; o-igieoi ['..] in 
comparison (Akugbe) . The thing 
with which the comparison is 
made stands in the genitive. 
(2) notice; reminder; y-ona 
tu igieoi et3s n-ima gba ta ni 
[• ~ J'' J] lit. "take this to 
make comparison of that matter 
(about) which we spoke to- 
gether" : take this as a reminder 
of what we spoke about j cf. 

v. ru [']• 

igis [/] stamping with feet (in 
dancing, stronger than uke 
[*.]); igi-awe [/, .] footstep (not 

igieoe {."%.] chest (part of body), 
not so common as swse [,"\]; 
ogb-ekpa y-oo-igisoe [/...%.] he 
struck my chest in boxing. 

igiode [. . .] guidance; cf. gie 1 [J], 

igiotua [\J] water-yam (a kind 
of white yam) ; v. ema 2 [..]. 

igiodu [...] authorization; orh- 
igiodu ne ya tu^ze 
he authorized him to do it; cf. 
gie [*](?), udu [..](?). 

Igo [ a village situated on the 
road leading to Uyoto ['/], about 
ten miles from Benin ; there the 
Portuguese entered; an Oloku 
["•] priest lives there, and there 
is a market as well. 

igobele [/..] a tall glass (or 
glass jug) for wine or water 
(about twice as tall as ekalaka 



[.TV]); °f- En s l g° blet ; v - 

egalahi L.^J. 
igogo ['"] outstanding vein-like 

parts of tree-buttress, 
igogo [V ] corner; otuls mu 1- 

igogo ni [;-;/SS] he ran 

round (passed, la ["]) that 

corner; v. exoxo ['"]. 

!gu [. ] a s ^ to which all 
the brass-smiths belong; its 
morning greeting is la ni! ['*], 
and la^igu ['/] was also given; 
its head is chief Obasogie [""*.], 
and its centre, the brass-smiths' 
quarter at Benin City; cf ogu 

[."].;*. £ g bee [.%]• 

igue ['•%] (bush-) village; igue 
n-uwa ye ni smose ['X/'A^] 
the village where you live (are) 
is not nice (-looking) . 

iguegug [V.] W tickling, (a) 
idiom. : igu£g-uw-egbe ['/"'] 
"tickling of inside of body": 
secret enmity manifested by 

. intrigues ; telling lies about one's 
enemy, etc. ; v. so i [ ' ] . 

iguma [ . ] a grunt ; panting ; v. 
gbe i [']. 

Igunwagws [" # J "village (igue 
["XI) of chief Unwagwe" : name 
of a Bini village, seat of an 
Dxwahs [ J.] shrine. 

igwabo [...] manual skill, espec. 
in wrestling and games (but not 
in manual work); o-Ef-igwab- 
ore, oyamu w 6 gb-oto [".J. '."'.] 
if it had not been (for) his 
skill, he would have knocked 
him down; cf gws ['], obo 


igweCi [ # , . ] (i) knowledge ; igweOi 

ot-eti [ " ] knowledge is power. 

(2) skill in working, e.g. in 
carving, carpentering, etc.; but 
not only manual skill, e.g. it 
is used of a teacher as well; 

cf gws [*], eoi [.%]; v. igwabo 

L..L iEe& [...]. 
gws i [ J knee; igws tolo tfe 

[.....*] (my) knee is itching 
( me" in Bini); oy-of-igwE (yi 
[']) [.'*.] ^ brought him to his 
knees (e.g. said of an offence for 
which the wrongdoer must beg 
forgiveness on his knees), igu- 
abo [."*]" knee of arm " : elbow. 
igw-Ewe [/•] " "goat's knee": 
a shrub; its leaves are used 
(N.W.Th.) to smooth newly 
made clay-pots; cf Ewe [/]. 
igws 2 [ V J the time when the 
annual sacrifices to the head 
(uhuou [/J) are made; between 
September and November (there 
: .s no special word for the 
Oba's igws); ey£ n-agbo hia 
ya c-uhuo-5y-ukpo et-ati-££-igwE 

[ 7 \ . . .] " the time every- 
body (all the world) takes to 
sacrifice (ru ,["]) to the head 
annually (oy-ukpo ['*']) it is 
what is called igws" ; cf gws [J], 
igwomore [...'] first servants of 
a newly crowned Dba; the 
servants he had as Edaikg 
were formerly banished from 
the country or killed in the 
supposition that they would not 
respect him sufficiently as king, 
having seen him as a boy or 
young man; cf. omo ] /], re 2 [']. 
igba [ \ ] time ; in connection with 
numerals only, and with the 
particular meaning of "time" 
found in this connection; igba- 
va [7] twice; igba-ha [ /] 
thrice; igba-n£ [*/] four times, 
igba-sg ['/] five times; igba-gbe 
[7] ten times; igba w ugie [7 
twenty times ; igba-y-isg [ 7 ' ] 
hundred times ; ilu-gba [" ] how 
often? cf Yor. igba [_]. 

83 6-2 

igba [ , # ] (i) thorn ; iy-uw-oha-rc, 

igba keso i3-ow£ [/*'... 7.1 I 
went to bush to-day, and a 
thorn got stuck in my foot. (2) 
igb-She [/.] spine of a fish. (3) act 
of proclaiming a woman as the 
Dba's wife ; same as ibaigba [ , . J . 

Igbayo [V.] W name of the 
Jamieson River. (2) goddess of 

the Jamieson River (an ihe 

igbaniherha [.„/] lit. "thorns 
that are pierced (by) wood" (?): 
a group of about six people 
appearing at orhu [/] (the day 
when the Oba's mother prepares 
food for the dead left unprovided 
at eho [/]) and perform a feat 
of piercing their cheeks with a 
piece of wood. This has not 
been done recently; cf. ha [*], 
erha [/]. 

Igbake [.'.] a town of the Ika 
(Eka [ . ' ]) people standing under 
the j urisdiction of the Dba ; it is 
situated at about six miles' 
distance from Agbor (Agbo [ . J) , 
near the road leading to the 
Ishan (Esa ['.]) country. Its 
quarters are: Dta [/], Ake [\], 
Igboto [/*], Idumeru [//], 
Iduminws [.'.'], Idumodi [/'J, 
Umoloa [\\], Idumigbo [/..], 
Idumore [.'"] (and one more). 
(The names beginning withldum- 
have in Bini the form Idui3-; 
cf. iduCu [/.] "quarter"). 

igbama [./] adult (young) man's 
age (but not an otu [ . J : " age- 
group" !) (the number of years 
se^ms not to be in any way 
definite: 18-30 was given once, 
and 30-50 or 45 at another time) : 
skpo n-inar-igbama ['77] when 
("at the time when") I was a 
young man. 

igbanja ['.'] a kind of kola (with 
broad leaves) introduced by the 
Hausa people; also eoe-igabati 
[/,.;]. The j shows that the 
word is of foreign origin, v. erce 

igbaroy£t)0 [ ] "looking after 

the country ' ' : administration 
(in modern use) ; cf. gbe 1 [ * ], aro 

[..], ye [^]. «■»[..]. 

igbe [/] ten; igbe nya w iy-isg 

[/..""] no. 

igbedia [../] staying at one 
place, being motionless, seden- 
tary; cf gbe 1 ['], dia 1 [*]. 

igbegbe [/*] a kind of material: 

igbehe [ . . . ] (1) fishing ; mar-igbehe 
[ ] we are going a-fishing; 
(2) pi. of ogbehg [...]; cf gbe 1 
ehe [\], ogbehe [...]. 

igbemaba [....] band of "cala- 
bash-drummers" (v. emaba [..,-]) 
serving the Dba or a chief; cf. 

gbe 1 [•]. 

igberagia [....] prostitute. 

igbesa [...] (pi.) supporters of a 
party in a palaver; partisans; 
cf. gbe 1 ['], esa [/]. 

igbesafca [....] a working gang of 
the Oba's: wood- and bone- 
carvers; cf gbe ['], esaCa ['..]. 

igbi [/] second yam, grown when 
the first fruit has been cut off ; 
it is mostly small and uneven, 
and is used for seed-yam only; 
is called igbi before sowing; cf. 
Yor. gbi [.](?); v. ivu [..], 

ema 2 [..], kps ["]. 

Igbiha [ 

igbina [ . . 

gle ; cf. 
igbo [\] 



J an Ishan-speaking 
twelve miles from Igbake. 
. ] fighting ; fight, strug- 
gbina 1 [,']. 

a top (toy) ; it is mostly 
with during the dry 


igt>° [V] (*) echo. (2) inter- 
ference, in gb-igbo [V] to inter- 
fere; cf. gbe 1 [*]. 

igbogie [_J making fun; jest; 
cf. gbe 1 ['], ogie [/]. 

igboroyo [ ] workers in timber- 
areas who collect mud (orpyo 
[...]) and spread it on the track 
over which the logs are hauled ; 
("potto-potto-boys"); cf. gbe 1 
['], oroyo [..J. 

igbosiko [ ] (pi.) gang of timber 

workers who square the logs; 

cf. gbe 1 [•], osiko [./]. 

ig^ 5 [ ] lower leg: shin and 

Igt> 3 L.] the Ibo-people. 

igbovo [ ] jealousy; cf. gb-ovo 

igbu [ ] a big covering cloth for 
men; bigger than eku w oxuo 


igbume [ mm J (sgl. o-) women wor- 
shippers of the god Oxwahe 
[,J ,]; lit. " camwood-rubbers " ; 

igbume wax! £a [ are you 

followers of Dxwahs? (e.g. when 
hearing women sing an Oxwahe 
song); cf. gbe 1 ['], urns [/]. 

igbuzebu [ ] (pi.) uzebu dan- 
cers: the uzebu [ /] dance is 
danced by inhabitants of the 
quarter that bears the same 
name (i.e. the EzDmo's [""] 
people) ; it is danced backwards, 
and accompanied on the ida [ , m ] 
drum; v. gbe 1 ["]. 

Iy a [ . "\ ] tne Igara country ; Idah ; 
cf. IyomiyS [*\J. 

[ J M tnat (introducing a 
sentence as object); imie-y-ore 
[/."%] I saw that he had come. 
(2) namely, "I mean*', or un- 
translated: introduces a noun 
added at the end of the sentence, 
as an explanation of a preced- 

ing pronoun ; omi-ezo n-ukpo-y- 

ouoxa na [/W..A1 ne na( * 
(mi£ [']) a law-suit last year, 

this boy; oy-a no-y-owa na 

[ V * ] whose is it, this house? 

cf. ye [/](?). 

iyede [ ## J "doctor's" drum; of 
narrow circumference, both sides 
are covered with snake-skin 
(viper); two of them are tied 
together ; alternately beaten 
(by hand) below (low tone) and 
above (high tone). Native 
" doctors ", with the exception of 
the Ogwsga [."%.] diviner, have 
it, and also the priests of OsCL 
[/]; v. obo [/], ema 

iyehe [ _ J molar teeth ; cf. iyo 2 

["](?);©. osuak5 [.*%.]. 
iygya [ _ J a small bell worn on 
the head by women priests; cf, 


(i)yexueCe [,',,] "touch-me-not": 
trigger of a trap; cf. xue [J] ; v. 

iyibierie [//] (pi.) female servants 
at the Erie [ / ] (theOba's harem) ; 
cf. ibie [/], Erie [.*].• 

iyimi-axis [.*".] "I shall not see 
mourning", a tree, Tetrapleura 
tetraptera\ bears three-cornered 
pods which are used as a medi- 
cine against cough. A widow 
mourning for her husband, and 
also a widower, must hold a 
pod of this tree, to which a 
miniature bow and arrow as 
well as the grass aya [/] (v. 

ihooegbe, ihooeoo [ ]) are tied, 

wherever she goes, whether in 
the house or to the backyard 
(latrine), because these things 
are taboo for dead people and 
will prevent her husband's spirit 
from approaching her (in dreams 
or visions) and thus possibly 

causing her illness. The " not "■ in 
the name is perhaps a euphem- 
ism due to the fear of pronouncing 
a sentence with a sinister mean- 
ing; cf. mie ['], axie [..]. 

iyioieko [ , V . ] " I do not sleep on 
the stomach"; another name 

. for uleko [...], a medicine 
securing easy delivery ; the child 
is supposed to be asleep on its 
stomach in the womb when 
there are difficulties in the 
delivery; cf oie [J], eko [.*%]. 

iyo i [ " ] money, iy-ehaya [***.] 
rent; also iy-owa ["•] "house- 
money", and iyo n-ahae y- 
owa n-adi w a [\.J , t "J] money 
paid for the house where one 
lives, iy-ekweku [**'•] money 
received unduly, i.e. by black- 
mail or false pretences, iy- 
emomo [ *\.] loan; also iyo 
n-amomDE [\\"\] money that 
has been lent; v. odekue [./]. 
iy-eo-are ["/] money given to 
enable servants to buy food 
for themselves, "chop-money", 
iy-ibowa ['*..] cost of house- 
building; also iy-owa ["•] (v. 
above), iy-irhioxuo ['*..] sum 
paid to wife's family when 
marrying; "dowry"; also iyo 
n-ay a rhi-oxuo ["/*.".] " money 
used to take a wife" (an older 
and more usual way of saying 
it); v. ugaoe [.%.]• iy-isu ['*•] 
interest (on a loan), iy-itiezo 
["..] summons-fee; also iyo 
n-aya ti-ezo ["."/"] "money 
used to call a law-suit " (an older 
and more usual way of saying 
it), iy-otu membership- 
fee (of a club or society), 
iy-uhuuu ["'.] "head-money": 
tax taken from each head of 
the population; also iyo n-ava 

ha(a)-s-uhu(5u (ha osa [.."]) 
[\.7\] "money taken to pay 
debt of head", iy-uhuo-£ki 
["•,.] "money of head (start) 
of market": trading capital, 
iyo n-af i-5oa te [ V \ J J ' ' money 
which one cuts a man off " : fine, 
iyo n-oba "red money": 

(a) gold, (bj alloy, iyo n-ofua 
['/•] "white money": silver; 
cf, Ibo ego [*•]; Yor. owo [•*], 
ukp-oyo [/'], iyobioye [ ]. 

iyo 2 [*'] milk-teeth; v. ze ["|, 
iyehe [...](?). 

iyo [.J horn. 

iyo [."%] (i) flight of a bird; igb- 
oyoho y-iyo n-owi-ere [.'•/.."" .] 
I shot an eagle in flight this 
morning (to-day). (2) selling 
goods, going around in the streets 
or the market, with the atete 
[ ### ] on the head (or hold- 
ing it); hawking; (contrast: ate 
[/]); Amazioya, domu^ize n-ofua 
na yari-yo me [' 'J J, ./// '] 
"Amazioya (a woman's name), 
come and take these crayfish to 
go hawking for me!" 

iyobioye [ " ' " ] idiom. : (great) ex- 
penses ( Akugbe) ; iyobioye w uwalo 
70 [ "\,*%] "a lot of money 
(it is that) you have wasted on 
it" (lo [}]; wa [%] indicates 
surprise); cf. iyo [**]. 

iyoyo[_J (1) smoke. (2) iyqy-iso 
[/■/] "smoke of the sky ": cloud ; 

iyoy-iso leyolere[/.W ] <<tne 
clouds are running to and fro" : ' 
the clouds are moving over the 

Iyomiyo [ * \ J an Igara man, pos- 
sibly also used for *an Igbira 
man; another variant is Ey~ 
5miy5;c/. Iya [.%]. 

ih& [. ] mto which victims of 
sacrifices were thrown. 


iha [.'.] oracle; cf. Yor. if a [•*]. 

iha [ . . ] the wrong way of doing 
something, e.g. os-am-iha [.*%.] 
he scooped water turning the 
opening of the calabash down- 
stream (lit. "he scooped water 
of the wrong way"; this water, 
according to custom, is not 
drunk, but only used as an 
ingredient of a medicine against 
barrenness; ogba-t-iha [.**.] he 
tied it in the wrong way (e.g. 
when making a bundle of yams) ; 
obu w st-iha [..'*.] he decided 
it (a law suit) wrongly. 
Ihama ['.'] a chief (hereditary 
title); member of the Uzama 
[/J; senior of the Ihogbe [/J, 
one section of the Umogu [*/] 
(Oba's) family ; he attends to the 
Oba's ancestral shrines (of the 
paternal side); he also repre- 
sents Ihogbe at the burial of an 
Dba; v. okofo [ "]. 
ihana [./] (i) simple sacrifice 
made to one's father as sub- 
stitute for eho [/] (big annual 
feast of sacrificing to one's 
father); is a sign of poverty, 
or else done in the interregnum 
between the death of an Dba and 
the coronation of his successor. 
(2) formula said when taking the 
first mouthful of food when 
sacrificed to one's father; v. 
olema [...]. 
ihe ['.] place, spot (used in con- 
nection with numerals only); 
ih-eva [* '], ih-eha ["], ih-ene 
[•/], ih-iss [•/], ih-eha [V.l 
at two, three places, etc. ; ih-eso 
['/] some part; cf. ehe [/]. 
iheni [_J act of giving a name 
(to a child) ; cf. he [/], eni [.J. 
iherhe [ ## J (1) bean- or corn- 
husks the contents of which 


have been eaten by insects 
(espec. ants); rho w iherhe n-or- 

ihEus na kua [ " J J] pick 

the empty husks which are 
among these beans, and throw 
them away! (2) empty gums 
of infants ; oooxa na y-iherhe wo 

(5-enw£ [..A\...M " this child 
has taken its gums and pressed 

my breasts": i.e. sucked at my 

[ '] load; ihexuaa tie [//] the 
load is (too) heavy for me ; ih-ay- 
emiowo [/'•.] "load of mat 
(a^s [..]) of meat": dried meat 
wrapped in a mat ; up to a short 
time ago, meat was carried in 
this way to the Dba and to chiefs 
by hunters making a present of 
part of their kill (v. imuoha 
[ ]); this is said to be done 
still " in the bush" (the nasalisa- 
tion-mark on the e indicates a 
nasalised glide only) ; ih-oka [/.] 
a load of corn (maize); cf. he 

ihe (1) a deity whose shrines 
are believed to have been in- 
stituted by the deity itself ; the 
ihss mostly correspond to rivers 
and are believed to have been 
human beings who transformed 
themselves into those rivers; 
(contrast: ebo [..], any "juju 
constructed by men"); cf. ohg 
[ \\. (2) oath ;v. ▼§[']. (3) curse; 

v. tie [J]. 

ihshunu [....] unanimous de- 
cision; cf. hkhg [/], unu [.*]. 

ihsoE I 1 ) beans; ayam-inya 

kpab • y-ih£(3£ ni-ts yi (mie [ ]) 
[ • ' "JJJ'] "can we get yam 
to peel for those beans to-day ? ' ' 
i.e. to eat together with the 
beans; v. bie [>]. (2) kidneys 
(probably because of their 


shape); if there is a need for 
differentiation, ihsfl-af aCe [ * ' ' • J 
"animal-kidney" is used. 

ihi [ \ ] actions forbidden to women 
as indecent (and thus forming 
part of awua [..])-, e.g. omission 
of washing the feet after re- 
turning from the " backyard" 
(i.e. latrine). After a breach of 
this rule e.g., the house as well 
as the offender must be purified 
with a chicken (v. ihooegbe 
[ ]) and a sacrifice of kola- 
nuts be made to the father- 
shrine (erha ["]) ; cf. uhi [ m .](?). 

ihi [ "%] mucus (from nose); cf. 

t-ih! [.■%];*. »[']. 

ihiaya [ _ ] (also ehiaya) (i) ear of 
corn. (2) small things (such as 
sroro [*'*]), cowries, etc. worn on 
the head by women priests ; (as 
soon as they are possessed by 
their juju, these things are tied 
in their hair, and from that time 
they always wear them, and no 
longer carry loads on their head, 
but on their shoulders) ; some 
(male) Oxwahe [ t J # ] priests also 
wear ihiaya. 

ihieye [\J a tree, Myrianthus 
arbor eus ; tips of the leaves are 
used as ingredients of a soup. 

ihiehie [ ' / ] a black bean ; it grows 
very slowly until the creeper 
has side branches, after which 
it grows more quickly; it is 
among the Ezomo's [ # ' '] taboos. 

ihie [*'] (pi. ehie) finger-nail; 
ihi-afaue ["*'.] claw. 

ihiehie ["/] third generation of 
children (grand-grand-children) ; 
a praise-word : ihiehie n-ogiomo 

[ .'...'] " tne third generation, 
the principal (one) of children" 
(because it is the last generation 
of children and grand -children 

a man can live to see); v. iwu 

[..]. eye [.*]. 
ihi5 [ ] loofah (used as a sponge) ; 

yay-ihio t3e na xue yi 

who has washed (himself) with 

this my loofah? 

ihip [ # /] nine. 

lhiro [ J seven. 

ihifo [...] an age-group at the 
Dvia [ *] society; next in age to 
the ed» [/];*. Ovia [/]. 
iho [ J companions of the same 
otu [_] (age-group); equals; iho 
t>a w uxi [..*.'] you are of my (lit. 
"our") otu; aua-t-iho-a [",../] 
who are your company (equals) ? 
(v. aoe [*']); ya-t-iho-a 
(same meaning) would express 
contempt and be used to a 
junior "boy"; ih-egbe [/•] (1) 
" body-companion" : companion 
or, companions, of the same 
otu; equals; ih-egbe mau-ore xi 

companions we and he 
are": he and I are of the same 
otu ; iho Jao-arhuaf a [ § \ J 
"equals of Arhuata": heroes of 
the strength of Arhuafa [*"\.] 
(v. aoe ["]). (There are seven 
of these heroes, among them 

DxuoCovo N-igwisi [ ' / ] ; 

GbooarhuS N-oxuou P ' 1, and 

Nekirixidi N-ogbelaka [' ".".])• 

(2) deputy, in business, office, 
family affairs, etc.; iya w e z- 
ihegbe, ikekpao [/\"\\/] I 
(took him and) chose him as 
(my) representative before I lef t ; 
v. odayi [./]. 
Ihogbe [/J part of the family of 
the Dba (Umogu [*/]); their 
quarter lies on the right side of 
the (old) Siluko-road starting 
from iduo-ibiwe [ # \\]. ' 
ihoi [ mm ] empty ; vain ; eMhoi w eo- 
ihoi w uru (or e£-uru [.V]) 

[.'././] "empty things empty 

f things (they are which) you are 
doing": you are doing nothing 
but useless things ; cf. d-ihoi [*J. 

ihooegbe [_ J " brushing body'" : 
purification of oneself after a 
breach of taboo. This consists in 
a complicated process of brush- 
ing one's head with a chicken, 
certain leaves (aya [/]; eb- 
ixiui [/'J), and the tip of a 
palm-branch while pronouncing 
certain purifying formulas. 
Drawing circles (b-oxi [\]) also 
plays a part in the ceremony; 
cf. hoCs [/], egbe [/]; v. 
ihavowa [...,], ihooEuo [....]. 

ihooeco [..'']' " brushing ' town 
(village)": purification of a 
village or town. This was, in 
Benin City, performed by mem- 
bers of the Dba's household (and 
in villages it is done by a man 
appointed by the odiowere [ / / ]) . 
They took a man, dog, goat, 
and fowl, tied branches of a 
palm, the ixit5i ["J-tree and 
the shrub aya [/] to them, and 
dragged them round the town. 
Then they prepared afo [/], 
splashed it on the roads and 
said : ofu re [ / • ] " it is cool ", i.e. 
peaceful; absolved. Dogs are 
nowadays used for the purpose, 
and in bush- villages, chickens; 
cf. hoCe [/],eoo [..];». ihooegbe 
[....], ihooowa [..,.]. 

ihoCowa [ ] * ' brushing house ' ' : 

purification of a house with 
a chicken (e.g. after the breach 
of a taboo) ; cf. hove [ , ' ] , owa [ / ] ; 
v. ihooegbe [....], ihoCevo [ ## *J. 

ihu [/] foam; cf. hu [']. 

ihua i [ *] song; ihu£ n-aya gbe 
[... ] "a song that is taken to 
dance": dancing-song; and spe- 

cialised ihua n-aya gb-ohoyo 
[.....] Ohoyo-song; ihua n-aya 
gb-ukpukps [../'".] Ukpukpe- 
song. There are many songs for 
every special dance, ihua n- 
aya x5-kuo [.../.%] war-song. 
ihuS n-aya ri w ek£ [. . / ' *.] mud- 
treading-song. Constructions 
with a following genitive are 
also used : ihu-ixokuo [.'...] song 
of warfare ; ihfi-Iyokuo [/..,] 
warriors' song, 
ihua 2 [ /] act of making a sacri- 
fice of new yam to one's gods, 
at the end of the agws [ ] ; cf. 

ihue ["] nose; v. fia [']. 

ihue [/] woof (crossing the warp 
on a loom) . 

ihuhu ["/] a reed which, together 
with ifaoifa [. .\], forms the 
"sudd" in the creek-area; ihuhu 
muma y-eze na, oyakwegi w ala-re 
['.'•..^. "the sudd has 
become congested in this river, 
will it enable us to pass to- 
day?" cf. ohuhu [...]. 

ihuru ["%.] a worm which boys 
are liabie to be infected with 
when playing in the mud during 
the wet season. It makes toes 
and soles itch, and causes small 
swellings (guinea-worm?) ; oooxa 
na, k-uw-ame la dia n-ihuru y£ri w 

d^owe (ken) [..v.. ys\:.i 

hallo, boy, get out of the rain- 
water that ihuru may not eat 
your foot!; v. ikolo [*/]. 
ihuou [/J millipede; idiom.: 
o-uagu xia rhurhurhu u-ihu6u 
[J" '/ •••] why are you groping 
about like a millipede? v. 

ogie [.;]. 
ijake (and izake) [ m 'J] a big fish 
" with teeth like those of a dog" ; 
of Jekri origin. 

8 9 

Ijehe [_'] name of a village: 
"Jesse"; its population consists 
of Sobo people ; the name is not 
of Bini origin. 

ika i ["•*] a small-sized variety of 
ivi-urhu [',,] (coral necklace for 
chiefs); the thread on which it 
is strung up is ik-eni [ " • ] (an 
elephant's tail-hair), nowadays, 
red copper wire. 

ika 2 [ " ] spur of a cock. 

ika [\] (i) a creeper, Eremospatha 
macrocarpa ("cane"); used for 
bow-strings and for tying things. 
(2) bow-string. (3) ik-eni ["•] 
whip of elephant's tail the hair 
of which is used as thread for 
coral necklaces and anklets ; cf. 
Yor. ika [•.]. 

ikadels [\"\.] forked pole; e.g. in 
ikadsl-ens [*.'.]" tne * our poles ' ' , 
a praise-name of the edi5 n-ene 

[.."VL tne village elders, 
ikaerha [_J "notching" trees (a 

timbermen's expression) ; cf. kae 

VI erha [/]. 
ikaya [ , , J (also ekaya) (1) bridle. 

(2) said to be used to denote as 

well "gag"; v. uxu [/]. 
ikau [/] lighter sort of potash 

(saltpetre); cf. Hausa kanwa 

["]; v. odo [" ]. 
ike [..] log;'ik-erha [/•] log 

(of wood), 
ikebe [ ] buttocks; v. itotaya 

[ ]• 

\m • • • • J 

ikefe^i [../] heathen; pagan (re- 
cent word used by Christians; 
oruebo [ _ J is better) ; cf. Yor. 
, keferi [..*]; Hausa kafiri ["/]. 

ikewu [/•] three stones serving 
as pot rest (each one is called 
ikewu) . 

iksde [ <## ] (pi.) "day-counter": 
a word occurring in a song, v. 
iru£d£[.. J; c/.ka4 ['], ede[/]. 

ikega [."%..] (1) wrist (same as 
urhu^abo [."•]). (2) an anklet of 
cowries which is worshipped as 
ObD [/] (hand, arm); women 
keep it on their atsts [ . t J (tray 
for carrying merchandise) in 
order to prevent things being 
stolen, and for quick sale ; men 
have a carved stool like uxwerhe 
[/"] with a hand carved at one 
corner and put their iksga on 
this (pointed) hand ; the whole is 
called their Obo [/], the sacred 
object representing their hand. 

ikeks ['/] bicycle; ikeke n-itemu 
ri-ehe n-owie-re, osare o-ode 
r " *• J '] "the bicycle 
which I was taking to go to 
(some) place this morning (of 
to-day) , it burst on the way " ; 
cf. Yor. keke [./]; v. owe [,.], 
ibie ["], urhukpa [...], ifsos 

['..]> obD [/]» evavu C.S.]- 
iksti [ ] rest from work; cf 

ke 1 [>](?), •*[/]. 
ikia 1 [* ] conclusion; result; v. 

ke 2 [>]. 

ikia 2 ['J squandering; pro- 
digality; a curse: ikia raha-a 
[ * ' J ] ' 1 may squandering seduce 
you'* : may you be a squanderer 
(used by a " big man ' ' towards 
a "small" one); v. ha [J]. 

ikia [ '] fly; an idiom: erha w a le 
n-ikia (na [*]) ['.J J.'] "your 
father has escaped (' run from ') 
the flies": your father has died 
(used as a euphemism by old 
people) ; v. fi ya 

ikiewua [..J waking the Dba 
ceremonially by imitating the 
crow 6f the cock; cf kie [J], 

ewua [*"%]. 
ikigedu [....] " planting timber ' ' : 
afforestation; cf. ko ['], igsdu 



ikilukpafg [ ] sleepiness of a 

pregnant woman ; it is also said 
to befall husbands of pregnant 
women; a word of abuse when 
seeing somebody sitting drow- 
sily: ikilukpaf-ogb-us [ 

are you suffering of ikilukpafe? 
c/. ukpafg [/.](?). 

ikioxo [/ J 140. 

iko [/] meeting; iko na gbae-re 
[//.] this meeting is full to- 
day; cf. Yor. ko [*]. 

ikolo ["/] an earth-worm; used as 
a bait in fishing; cf. Yor. ekolo 

[\f\iv. ikpe[.J. 

ikoro [ "] a broad brass armlet 
worn by chiefs at ugies; it covers 
part of the lower arm. 

ikoroba [""] pail for drawing 
water; cf. Yor. koroba [••"]. 

iko [\] (open) opponent; enemy; 
adversary; ik-ooa one's 
enemy; v. eree xia [J]; 

oyia ['J.' 

ikoba [".] penny ; cf Engl, copper ; 
Yor. kobo [*.]. 

ikux [..] (1) rubbish ; dead leaves ; 
dirt; iku w inya [/*•] yam-peel- 
ings ; iku_erha [ / ' ' ] young 
trees (and shrubs). (2) pus; iku 
r-ot-ste [./'.] pus is in his 
sore ; iku ye tiyitiyi y-ot;-aru w £tE 

1 [./ V.] pus is "twisted; 1 

(spread) over the surface of his 

iku 2 [ # J (general term for) 
games, including dances; cf 
ku [J]. 

iku [..] bundle (always followed 
by a genitive) ; mu ikuwinya ni 
lele o£ yade [./'••./ *J] take that 
bundle of yams (and) follow me 
along (" coming") ; ika^ofioi 
[ " \ ] corpse tied up for burial, 
aiso ' iku^oaxe [ * "\ ] ; cf. ku 


iku a type of room in Bini 

houses containing a hollow on 
the floor called ukpafe [/J into 
which the rain-water flows from 
an open space in the roof (v. 
Roman atrium and piscina); 
the various shrines of the 
ancestors and the powers wor- 
shipped by the family are found 
each in one iku. So there is an 
iktt n-aru w erha [/'•••] iku of 
the father's shrine, and an ikfi 
n-aru w iye [/*•••] iku of the 
mother's shrine. The former is 
the first iku : iku n-uy-ore [/•••]* 
i.e. the iku of the outside uya 
[..], the latter, the second iku: 
iku n-ok-adesE [ / \ . J (ke [" ]) 
the middle iku. The third iku is 
that of Oloku : ikfi n-aru w oloktt 
[/••••.]; it is always long and 
narrow and may contain an 
Eyodo [\ J or ukpafg (which is 
the same) ; not all houses seem 
to possess it, but in former times 
every house is said to have had 
one. The third iku is the last 
one of those to be found in the 
houses .of "ordinary people". 
It is then their private iku, iku 
n-od-uw-owa[ /*••.] " iku of the 
inside of the house", and will in 
that case not contain the Olokfi- 
shrine which will be kept at 
od-erie "[.*•]. The father's and 
mother's shrines must, if pos- 
sible, not be kept in the same ikG ; 
therefore, if a house has only 
one iku, besides the private 
apartments, the mother's shrine 
is in the ukp-ube [" J, i.e. in an 
ogwa [/] opening into the room 
containing the Eyod-EriE [**,*]» 
or else the two shrines, though 
in the same iku, are kept 
on different ibas ["]. There is 

a traditional story explaining 
this rule. Round the ikfis, ogwas 
and iryuyas ["%.] are grouped 
which open into the ikfis. Rich 
people have an ikii n-api ogii 
[/•••.] ikii of the Ogu-shrine (a 
narrow one between the first and 
the second ikfi). Poorer people 
have their Ogu-shrine opposite 
the mother's shrine, and the 
" arm " (Obo [/]) above Ogu. For 
Osu [ / ], v. ogwa [ /] and egu ["J. 
UhuOu [/J, the head, is wor- 
shipped either in a niche (iba 
["]) in one's sleeping-room, or 
(by chiefs) at a special shrine 
near the house-owner's private 
rooms. This is then called iku 
n-at-uhuou [ ]; v. shi [ # J, 
iba ['•]. 

ikuegbemu [...J "tying body 
(oneself) and taking " : contrition 
(Akugbe) ; cf. ku i [J]. 

ikuekue [* *] wrinkles; aru w ore 
bun-ikugkug (buno[/]) [./..V] 
his face is wrinkled (lit. "broken 
(in) wrinkles"). 

ikpakpa ['/] skin (a thicker one 
than ibobo [...]); ikpakp-egbe 
[*/•] skin (of body); ikpakp- 
erha [*/•] bark (of tree) ; ikpakp- 
oyEde plantain-peel; ikp- 

akp-ehe [* / ] scales of fish. 

ikpakpab [*.\ # ] a wild bean, 

ikpata [ " ' ] (i) evil spirits living 
on (or near) the roads believed 
to be able to "seize" one's wife 
or children by means of a fatal 
disease or an accident ; sacrifices 
are given to them at uprooted 
trees where they are supposed 
to live : the sacrifice is put in a 
bag, together with a viper's 
skin, and suspended from a root 
of the tree. (2) way-layers. 

ikpawe floor of house; cf. 

cms [..]'.' 

ikpaye [ '] "marauders", fol- 
lowers of chiefs on their errands 
for the Dba (in former days), 
pillaging the villages visited. 
Idiom.: ikpay-ore gbe o-ak5 si 
u-ihue [..A \. 1 "his marau- 
ders have struck like teeth (and) 
drawn like nose", i.e. they have 
seized many things and carried 
them off. 

Ikpe [\] name of a Bini village, 
seat of an Dxwahe [ m J m ] shrine. 

ikpekpetu [ / % m ] an edible kind of 
mushroom found on ogwe 
fallen trees. 

ikpema [ -# J (sgl. o-) band of 
drummers; a "gang" of the 
Oba's; cf. kpe 1 [>], ema [.J. 

ikpema [ ## J act of "digging" 
yams; cf kpe ['], ema [..]. 

ikpexie [ _ ] a white bean similar 
to ere [\], 

ikpezikg [ ] (pi., sgl. o-) a band 

of the Oba's : horn- and calabash- 
trumpet blowers ; some big chiefs 
have them as well ; they are not 
identical with the ikporhu [\ J 
or ikpak3h§ [_J;c/.kpei [j], 
eziks [".]. 

^ k P g [ . ] red yarn (sub-species : oli- 
m£hi uhoboriabe [../•]); 

v. ema 2 [_]. 

ikps [ ] (1) seed; grain; ikp-exae 
[. .] "grains of sand": a eu- 
phemism for smallpox (eoifi 
[./]); ikp-ogi [.^J or [/J fruit 
of a certain creeper (ogi [..]); 
it is in the shape of a ball and 
contains grains that are used in 
making eoaris [_'], native 
butter, and in unwofe [ # ] 
(soup) . The grains that have been 
ground and cooked are wrapped 
in leaves. There are two sorts of 


ikp-ogi: 5ax£ [\] and iseyegwe 
['%']; a similar plant is erherhe 
[ ' ' ] . ikp-oru [ / • ] cotton-seed ; 
used for soups; appetizing; 
ikp-oouxo [/*.]• "seed of he- 
goat" (ikpehere: faeces?): a kind 
of pepper; the grains are said 
to reach the size of tomatoes; 
not as hot as akpoko [*"] and 
Ehie n-exwa [./J; ikp-oka [.*.] 
a grain of maize; ikp-uko [/'] 
calabash-seed; used as a sub- 
stitute for ikp-ogi in unwotte 
[...] (soup). (2) a (single) piece, 
or* (single) pieces of something 
round and thus similar to a seed 
or grain; ikp-edl [/•] (single) 
palm nut or nuts; v. uhuo-£di 
[. . ] (bunch of palm nuts); ikp- 
eose [*\] "a piece of kola", 
i.e. one whole kola; ikp-£OEe-n£ 

[ # V3 * our ( wno ^ e ) kolas; this is 
the present given to a visitor 

as a sign of friendship; ikp-iyo 

[ *'] (single) cowries; sing. v. 

ukp-oyo [.'*]; ikp-okuta [/••] 

gravel; pebbles; found on the 

shrines of gods, e.g. on those 

of Dxwah£ [../.], Ovia [/], and 

Osoyo[ V]. They are then called 

ikp-£bo * [ f\ . ] or ikp-ih£ [/)]. 

They cover the dais on which 

the altar stands; sacrifices are 

made over them, and the blood 

running on the pebbles gives 

them power to fulfil prayers. 

They are used when cursing 

people in that the man who 

utters a curse spits over a 

pebble, and also in blessing 

when the speaker of the blessing 

blows over them. (3) faeces (?); 

v. ikp-oouxo [.'J; ikp-ikolo 

[//] "faeces(?) of earthworm": 

uncircumcised penis ; ikp-oxoe 

[•] "faeces(?) of worm": 

prickly heat ; swelling caused by 
eating too much sugar-cane, or 
by scratching oneself; v. likpa- 
likpa [....]. Possibly ikps may 
refer here to the little heaps of 

. soil made by worms. 

ikp-£dE [ *•] date; cf. zdz[ ikp£ 

[..]? * 

ikpekete [....] drummers placed 
behind the Dba while he sits or 
stands at an ugie [.J. 

ikpEkpe [./] cemetery; a curse: 
ikpskp£ w urat)i£ may you 

sleep on the cemetery ! (i.e. " may 
you not grow very old", since 
old people who had their own 
house and did not live in their 
father's or relative's house, were 
buried at their house) . 

ikpfisi [...] (big) yam-pole; they 
are used in the proportion of one 
ikpesi to three or four vgz [ '] 
(small yam poles). 

ikpi [ ' ] boa ; ikpl n-erha us gbe-f£ 

ta gbe [..'."."] the b oa my 
father killed to-day (£ t £ [* ]) i s 

very long; ikpi w am£ [.*..] "boa 
of water (rain)": rainbow; cf. 
ataikpl[...];z>.£nye[/], irofj, 
osumace [....]. 
ikplhiabo [••••] finger; ikplhiabo 

n-ogie [*"V\ t ] " tne principal 
finger": thumb; ikpfliiSbo n- 

usexae ["'/%..] indicator (cf 
s-exae ['.] to point with the 
indicator ; ikplhiabo n-ow (u) a- 
foka ['**.../] "finger to which 
a ring is forbidden": indicator; 
ikpthiabo n-ok-adese [""/...] 
middle finger ; ikplhiab-otoka 
[••••;] "ring-finger": fourth 
finger; also ikpihiabo n-odia ke 
n-exerhe ["77"] "finger that 
is near the small one" ; ikplhiabo 
n-exerhe ['".'*'] small finger; 
cf. obo, abo [/]. 



ikpo i ["] the big red-headed 
lizard; ikpo na wavig o-uhuCu 

fo ns [• ',*%. . ./] this lizard has 
already become red on (its) head 
(said to be a sign of age); v. 

ozikpab ["."%.]• 

ikpo 2 ["] (i) a palm rooted for 
the preparation of palm-wine. 
(2) a variety of exwexwe [/•] 
palm-wine obtained from a root- 
ed palm. 

ikpo 3 [ " ] very hard dry mud. 

Ikpoba [ , , , ] name of a river. 

ikpolo [ # \ # ] (1) sweeping; ikpol- 
eyo [/'>] refuse, rubbish of the 
preceding day that is swept 
away in the morning; ikpol-eyo 

yer-owa na-re [.''>/7.] the 
refuse of yesterday is still in the 
house to-day; v. amahekpol- 
ikpol-eyo ["'..'*>]. (2) a certain 
ceremony in the Dxwahs [./.] 
cult ; distinct from this is ikpol- 
eki [,'.,] annual festival of the 
god Oxwahe, corresponding to 
the eho [/] of other gods; 
we yay-ikpol-eki n-ukpo na yi 

[/.'..' 'Jl sha11 y° u g° to the 

Dxwahs festival this year? cf. 
kpolo [/]. 

ikporhu [...] (P 1 -) a band of people 
in the Dba's service, blowing 
tusks (ak-5h§ and orhu 

[ ]) at ugies [ . . ] ; bands blowing 
horns also follow the Ezomo 
["'] and a few (four or five) 
other chiefs; otu ikporhu 00 
I. ...J] where is the band of 
tusk- (or trumpet-) blowers? 
cf. kpe 1 [J], orhu [/]. 

ikposa [*\] a tree the flower of 
which is called iyoha [...]; the 
seed (ikposa) is used as an 
ingredient in pepper-soup, to 
"open appetite' ' during the 
new yam season (new yam is 

likely to upset the digestion and 
cause eoirato [..'.]); for another 
name of this tree v. ebe [/]. 

ikpo["] pound ; ixi-ehia ikp5 ugie 
[;■ — ••] I sold (it) alT for 
twenty pounds; Engl. 

ikpowia [_] nightly dancing as 
part of the ceremonies of the 
"second burial"; it is meant to 
celebrate the deceased's accept- 
ance in efifti [/J; v. arha [_]. 

ikpu ["] skin eruptions which 
itch more than craw-craw and 
take a long time to heal (aro 
[ , J in animals) . 

ilagwsgwe [\"\.] a disease: para- 
lysis agitans. 

ilawip [../] a big paddle (used 
when sitting in the boat). Of 
Jekri origin. 

ilaxwe [""•] a black ant, lives on 
the underside of leaves (nest 
consisting of white mud), bigger 
than if at5s [ ] ; not as black. 

ile [\] (the) bet; cf. t ile [' ]; 

llelegumaza [*'"..] hunchback. 

Ilobi [...] i 1 ) a village near 
8bue [.J. (2) the inhabitants 
of Ilobi forming a gang which 
appears during the amufi [ _ ] 
ceremony at isiokuo [.\]. They 
show a performance consisting 
of sudden falls from a standing 
position ; they are said to possess 
a charm protecting them from 
any evil consequences of this 

ilu (inu) ['*] (1) how much; how 
many; ilu no [' Y] how much 
is it? ilu w oni xi [* " * *] howmuch 
is that ? ilu-gba [ ] how often ? 
(v. igba-[\]);il-ukinD[ *;]how 
many months ago is it? ilu-f- 
ifal hia xi yi [* * \ how many 
(is it that they) are altogether? 


(2) "a few"; in omagba o-il- 
uki n-oxi n-odi w e6a ya, okekpao 

["/•../"VV/V] "it had not 
completed how many months it 

. is (sc. I do not know) that he 
stayed here, before he left": 
before a few months were over 
he left; cf. Yor. m-elo ['J], 

iluma [ . . . ] (1) describes the sounds 
produced by the blows at a 
boxing-match. (2) expression 
of encouragement at boxing- 
matches. (The second syllable 
is stressed.) v. elu [ V ]» kici [/]• 

ima ['.] disjunctive pronoun of 
the 1st pers. pi.; cf. ma [ J. 

imaru [ , , J simulation ; pretending ; 
make-believe ; cf. ma 2 [ ' ] , ru [ ' ] . 

imawu [...] act of committing 
suicide; cf ma 2 [*], wu [*]; v. 

otoe L. J. 
(i)me [..] disjunctive pronoun of 

the ist pers. sgi.; it may be 

emphasized by Oe ; e.g. ms oe [ _ ] 

would mean something like "do 

you mean me ?" ; cf i [J. 

imiato [..J prophecy ; imiaro rus 
se gbe [.../••] your prophecy 
has (always) come to pass (lit. 
"has come to pass much"); 
cf. mis ['], aro [..]. 

imiefa [/*]) (1) redemption from 
being sacrificed or hanged (by 
plea or substitution of somebody 
else). (2) (biblical) salvation 
(Akugbe) . 

imina [."%.] dream ; imina n-imina w 
Et£ mu C-oha gbe [.7.".'."] 
"the dream I dreamt to-day 
frightened me very much"; cf 
• mina [/], mie ['] (?). 

imu [' ] arrest; cf. mu 1 [']; v. 
ebe[/],tie [J]. 

imuasoE [...] (1) argument; dis- 
cussion. (2) disobedience; cf. 
mua [/], eue [..]. 

tmuegberioto [ ] ' ' taking body 

to the ground": humbleness 
(Akugbe); cf mu [*], egbe [/], 
rie [J], oto [..]. 

imueOi [ # # J eating feast arranged 
by the big chiefs in turn for 
the Iw-eguae [."%.] an d all the 
people working at the 8guae. 
The Dba sends as his share ten 
bundles of yam and twenty 
antelope legs; cf. mu 1 [*], eoi 

imu£ [ ] mosquito; an insulting 
expression: uru owe o-ow-imuE 
[;V] "you have (lit. "make") 

feet like (the feet) those of a 
mosquito ' ' . 
im(u)oha [...] giving presents to 
the Dba: every Bini man may 
present the Dba with fruits of 
his labour; hi oha [ "]; v. fi 

Ine ["] a chief; member of the 
Ib-iwe [."%.] society and one of 
the EyaEoo [,,,]. 

inia ["] (1) root; ini-erha [•"•] 
root of a tree; ini-eze [*' ] 
" root of river " : a stone (carved?) 
shaped similar to a root that is 
used by the Yorubas in pre- 
paring a "medicine"; ini-okuta 
[""••] "root of stone" is pro- 
bably similar to the preceding. 
(2) vein. 

inota [...] question; cf. no [J], 
ota [/]. 

inwanifioe [;.>.] " answering 
words": answer; cf. nwanis [/], 
enwanis [."%.]. 

inwaniomo [ ] acknowledgment 

of an infant-betrothal by the 
father-in-law (including a sacri- 
fice to erha [*']). 

inwina [. , J work; cf. nwina [/]. 

inya [/] yam (when taken out of 
the ground); iny-ogbo [/J raw, 


uncooked yam; cf. Yor. inya 
[•*], inyato [/.]; v. ema 2 [..]. 

Inyaha [_,] a mixed population 
of Binis and Yorubas, living in 
the Ondo and Benin Provinces ; 
part of the Ikale tribe. 

inyat5 [/.] roasted yam; inyato 
x5 $8 [/. /] I want roasted yam ; 
cf. inya [/], t5 3 [*]. 

inyato [ _ J (also e-) an ixioi [ " J 
tree planted before founding a 
new village or "camp" (v. ago 
[ *]), i.e. before building any 
nouses ; it represents the owner of 
the land and is, at the same time, 
the place where sacrifices to 
otoe [_], the ground, are made. 
Therefore, it is also called 
aru w otoe [/..]: "shrine of the 
earth". There is possibly still an 
ixioi as sign of the land-owner in 
Lagos which is said to have been 
founded by Bini people. The 
inyato is held holy as being the 
oldest and most permanent 
thing in any town or village in 
the Bini country. 

inyeho [_ J (1) deafness. (2) ob- 
stinacy; cf. ny-eho [/]. 

inye [ # J (1) news; inys magi-ana 
o-as-owa [.J\J."\]" the news 
cannot be told after we have 
arrived (at) home" (said after 
arrival): something disgraceful 
has happened on the road ; inye 
n-oma £-a na (or, ooa [ t J instead 

of t~ a ) I...J''] "good news is 
what one tells (ought to tell) ", 
said to stop somebody from re- 
lating bad news. (2) gossip. 
(3) Biblical: inye n-oma [...J] 
Gospel ; cf. Yor. ihi [ ] ; v. na 2 

inyeegbe [_J straining in child- 
birth; in going to stool; cf. nye 
VI egbe[.']. 

* n J l [ J the sasswood tree, Ery- 
throphloem macranthum ; bark 
used in the (sasswood) ordeal for 
witches, as medicine for 'healing 
wounds, and tied over house 
doors, in order to prevent 
witches from entering (inyi is 
a taboo for witches). Occurs in 
Ibo as well. 

ipapa [ f ] something flat: e.g. 
food fried in form of a flat cake, 
or, ipap-onwo [/-*.] and ["/J 
wax. This seems aiso to denote 
a beehive in a tree. 

ltl I.'] (*) rope; ir-ifi [/•] rope as 
part of a trap. (2) creeper 
(general term); v. alele ["'], 
aleke [...], ubo [/]; iri efiOi 
[. '.] "creeper (or, rope) of 
underworld", also: iri n-efifli ri 

[ "creeper that the 

underworld has tied": any 
creeper in the bush that has 
made a natural knot (which is 
rather rare); it is used as a 
medicine for "tying" people, 
e.g. for making women stay 
with their husbands ; cf. ri2 [']. 

iriaexwe [_] envy; cf. ria [J] 9 
exwe [ # J. 

iriaskpe [ ' # J a "gang" of people 
at the Eguae [ J who are in care 
of a captured leopard (part of 
the Oba's sacrifice to his head) ; 
c f- Ul £kps [..];*;. gwe [J], 
oyoho [ /], eniboku [//]. 

iriaixi [_] revenge; cf. ria [J], 

iriokode [ ] " eating the parcel 
of the way": embezzlement; 
misappropriation of property 
entrusted; cf. re 1 ['1, oko [ ], 

. .<*•[■."]• 

irioya [ # ] state of disgrace 
(Akugbe) ; cf. re 1 ['], oya[.J. 
iro 1 [ J riddle. 


iro 2 [ \ ] a shining stone said to be 
spat out by vipers, pythons, and 
a variety of crocodile at night 
in order to attract animals by 
its light ; it has magical powers 
to make a man rich; ir-ikpi 
[ ' V ] shining stone of a boa ; v. 
osumare [_J, arhuooto [V.I 
exe ["J. 

iru [ #> ] louse. 

irharo [ # J civilisation, lit. "un- 
folding the eyes"; cf rha [J] f 
aro [..]. 

Irheou [ ] name of (i) a river, 
(2) a Bini deity (an ihe [.%]) 
that seems to be linked with 
Ake [/]. 

irhiaeko [ _J (1) "spoiling sto- 
mach " : (slight) displeasure ; 
annoyance; yEoeJrhiaeko da (a) 

Ce [".'.. ."%] "do not have dis- 
pleasure towards me": do not 
be annoyed with me, or, look at 
me with ill feeling (used e.g. 
by somebody who tries to re- 
concile a man whom he has 
annoyed) (irhiaeko is said to be 
a word that is more in use now- 
adays than before.) (2) jealousy 
(same as igbovo [ ]); cf. rhi w a 

[VL **[.>]■ 

irhioxuo [ _ J ' ' taking a woman " : 
marriage (v. irhioha [...]); cf. 
rhie [J], oxuo [ ]. 

irhioha [...] "taking a bride": 
marriage (same as irhioxuo 

[...]); cf. rhie [^],oha[/]. 4 
irhirha [ _ ] numbness ; there is a 
belief that if a man falls on 
account of it, he will die in the 
same year, or, at least, fall ill; 

irhiso [ 'J .],[**. ] locust. Some old 
people are said to use isiso [ ' ' J 
in quick speech; cf iso [/]. 

irho [ # J cheek. 


irhu [*J shade; v. gbe ["]. 
irhuaegbe [ _ J (also e-) disciple ; 

cf rhua [}], egbe [/]. 
irhurhu [ " ] mildew ; mould ; v. 


irhuoirhu [. . ] nakedness. 

iraxws ['"%.] the day after to- 
morrow (in native calculation 
"within three days", viz. to- 
day, to-morrow, and the day 
after to-morrow); "next to- 
morrow" ; iraxwe w uzolane xerhe 

[".'.. '*] " within three days 
Saturday": Thursday. This ex- 
pression was said to be used by 
old people who do not know the 
European week. 

irehe [ ' " ] a white button such as 
is used for shirts, worn formerly 
as waist-beads by little girls. 

it e te [ "\ . ] arm-pit ; eoi mu o-irere 
[. '•>.] "something has caught 
my arm-pit": i.e. I have a boil 
in the arm-pit. 

irewe ["J the fruit of ogo [ J, 
used as fish-poison ; it is broken 
and thrown into the river; the 
fisherman in his canoe then drags 
the water with a net. A fence 
is made in the water as well 
because the dying fish try to 
escape; the system of fishing 
with the help of irewe is called 
ho w eze [/J, lit. "to wash the 
river"; uf-irewe ns fa (fia [']), 
ko, n-ayaya ho w eze [."/../ '/J 
have you already cut (or broken) 
irewe, friend, so that we may 
take it to "wash the river"? 

iro [ " ] main road (Oxwahe songs 
1); cf uro ["]; v. arale ['J,]. 

ko [..] (1) thinking, thought; 
idiom. : izs sii5i w o hi re [ t \ J\ '] 
I have for some time (ze [']) 
tried to save you from it (v. be- 
low) ; umakue, iro rue [ " "\ . , J] 


you have not agreed, it is your 
business (scil. if anything hap- 
pens to you), or, it is your 
fault, or, let it go however it 
will; iro da. n-or-u£-xoe sma 
U./JJZ^ the evil thought 
that is in your mind (exoe [\]) 
is not good. (2) hope; cf ro [J], 

iroyae [..J (sgl. e-) an age-group 
( otu [..]) consisting of young 
boys and men of the age of 
15-30 years; in a small village 
the age may be even higher 
because the change over from 
iroyae to iyele does not take 
place often; their communal 
work includes sweeping open 
spaces, cleaning grass, carry- 
ing mud for the iyele ['..]; 
formerly also when a Native 
Administration road was built, 
treading mud with the iyele, 
helping in house-building, e.g. 
by fetching water, and occasion- 
ally clearing big plots of farm- 
land for the most senior edio 
[/]; v. otu [..]. 

irola ["J track cut through the 
bush on which short logs similar 
to railway sleepers are laid, used 
for hauling logs from the forest 
to the next river: "corduroy 
track" (a timber expression); 
cf. Engl, "roller". 

itofiSi [....] burial; of. re [J], 
orioi [. J. 

irueke [_J collecting mud (in- 
cludes mixing mud) for house 
building; cf ru ['], eke [.J. 

iruebo [..J (1) sacrificing to a j uj u ; 
ma mu w egb-irusbo [..."..] we are 
getting ready to sacrifice to (our) 
juju! (used e.g. as an excuse for 
failure to attend to a visitor). 
(The last syllable, bo, is usually 
lengthened and spoken on a 

rising tone [|], which is more 
polite). (2) paganism. 
iruEds [...] "day-makers": a 
"gang" 'of the Dba's fixing the 
date of any event that has hap- 
pened. (The word occurs in a 
song, v. iksde [...].) cf ru ['], 
ede [/]. 

iruEeOi '[_] " learning things ' ' : 
(1) knowledge. (2) lesson; d- 
irueeoi n-uwa ru o-ow-ebe-rs 

[....J'.'"] wnat l esson nave 
you done at school to-day? cf 

rue [J], em [."%]• 
itu£ri£ [..J (pi.) youngest age- 
grade in the Ibiwe [ . ] society, 
the household society super- 
vising the Dba's harem (£rk 

[.']); cf. ru ['], erk [/]. 
ifa [\] (disjunctive) pronoun of 
the 3rd pers. pi. ; if a o-ore [\\] 
" they and he" : he and he, both 
of them, but the latter is also: 
ifa-veva [\/], ifa n-eva [W] 
those two. 

if ams [.Y] eaves of a house ; °f- 
am£ [ t J. 

ifaCe ["%.] a black house ant, a 
little bigger than ehihi [."%.]; 
one kind of ifat3s (not so dark) 
lives on the underside of leaves, 
like ilaxw£ [•'•]; ifat5-ebo ["••] 
" European ifafe" : a yellow ant 
found in sugar; v. ohe [.J. 

if aoif a [.."%.] a kind of water-plant 
drifting on the surface of creeks 
or ponds; together with ihuhu 
[7], it forms the "sudd" of the 
creek region. 

ifg [ ] (also short: ft, fo, fo£, f3f§) 
disjunctive pronoun of the 3rd 
pers. sgl.; ifs u-ore [,,\] "he 
and he": both of them (v. ifa 
['.]); f 5 [ J is used in front of back 
vowels, e.g. in fo w iixa [..J.] do 
you speak of him? do you mean 


him? though ife uxa [.../.] 
seems also possible. Another 
form ifoe is found e.g. in re- 
ported speech: ow-ifoe (we [J]) 
[.%.] ne said: he (i.e. himself, 
sc. e.g. did it; in an answer); 

ifeoi [...] knowledge; c/. fe [^], 
e ™ [."%];»• igweui [..J, igwabo 

iP[..] (i) hair of body. (2) fur of 
animals ; cf. Yor. iru [ • • ] . 

if us [ / ] dirt ; if us bu gbe o-egb-ue 
J] "dirt is much on your 
body " : you are very dirty. 

if uCu [...] grass; ifuou s5 gbe 
o-ogba na[ (i ;;;j" grass grows 
much in this fenced spot". 

isa [_] faeces; is-ahiaoe [/\J 
"faeces of bird": a tree, Maba 
chrysantha; is-ava [/•] "faeces 
of thunder": an oblong stone 
(half a foot or a foot long) 
found in the earth, on rocky 
soil, or in dead trees struck by 
lightning (?) (mostly in uloko 
[.'.] tree though it has a different 
origin there) ; easily breakable ; 
cf. ava [/] "thunderbolt". 
N.W.Th. has "long stone-axe". 
It is used for "medical" pur- 
poses ; is-6go [ /y ] "faeces of old 
farm land": yams growing on 
abandoned farm because over- 
looked by the farmer; v. uxuou 

isaba [ ] a style of hair-dressing 
worn by women during the 
fourth or fifth month of preg- 
nancy: consists of many small 
plaits, each "about as thick as 
a cigarette"; v. eto [/]. 

isagele [_ J "bullet-maker": a 
word occurring in a song; the 
tones are uncertain ;cf. sa ['](?), 
agele [...](?). 


isaya ['"] another name for 
eferhlnye [,/\,] (tapioca; sago). 

isahs [ * \. ] key ; rh-isahs gu t5e ya 
ki-skpsti [J^\ ] give me the 
key to open the box! cf. Port, 

isams [_ J baptism; cf. sa ['], 
ams ['j. 

isawswE [/_] the groundnut, 

Arachis hypogoea. 

* se [/] (!) pointed sticks used as 
nails in house building : they are 
passed through the roof-thatch 
which is laid like a saddle over 
okpo [/], the ridge beam; they 
go under the beam and through 
the opposite side of the thatch, 
the ends are then tied together 
over the thatch in order to 
prevent the ise from slipping 
out. (2) stabbing pains in chest 
and back, e.g. due to pleurisy; 
cf. se [']. 

isele r [ Y ] (1) shilling. (2) silver; 

cf. Engl, "shilling", 
isele 2 [.""V] a dance, of Jekri 


* S8 [ . ] M formula of confirmation 
used at the end of a prayer or 
blessing. (2) amen. 

ise [' J (1) seeds of otie ["] and 
several other trees, including 
ekasa [...], strung on a thread 
and worn round the foot as 
rattles (by the masqueraders of 
the Ekpo [ ## ] and Dvia [/] 
societies). Any rattle is called 
ise [ ' J , except the one made of 
urua [ J leaves, which is called 
egwe ["], (2) seeds woven in a 
net round a calabash, the whole 
being the rattle ukuse[" ] (uko, 
ise). The noise is made by this 
net ; there are no seeds inside the 
calabash . ise n-ata ['..']" seed- 
guessing": a game in which a 


man hides some seeds in his 
hands and asks somebody else 
to guess the number. The 
answers may be : okpa [ " ] "an 
odd number", izu [, J "an even 
number", oyo [**] "more than 
seven", or ihoi [.J "empty". 
Grains must be paid for wrong 
answers according to fixed rules. 
Other terms used in the game 
are ooi w akat5udu [.'....] and ogie 
n-et3o w uroyo [..*.'..]. iss n-aoa 
[ \ / ] " seed- throwing " : a game 
played with seeds that are 
thrown up from the palm of the 
hand, caught with the back of 
the hand first, and finally, caught 
again with the palm. If one or 
more seeds drop during this 
performance, the opponent gets 
the lot, if nothing drops, the 
opponent must "pay". It is 
played by the players in turn. 

isg [/]five; iss nya w ugie [/**•] 25 
iss'nya w ogba [ // . ] 35 ; cf. usg [ / ] 

isegws [ * " ] gravelly soil. 

isetfsgwe [W] a km d 01 ikpog 

the fruit is dark green 
not a climbing plant ; v. ogi [ t , ] 

Isekiri [..*.], also Isski [.^] the 
Jekri people; v. Iwere [."%.]. 

isekpoki [....] (sgl. d-) a working 
"gang" of the Dba's: leather 
workers, lit. "sewers of leather 
boxes"; they work for private 
individuals as well; cf. se ['], 
ekpoki ['*.]. 

isi 1 [/] (1) a village, town, or 
country where one does not live, 
e.g. isi £00 [/.J the other 
villages abroad; isi euo okpia 

na ke re [/ /J''] "this man 

has come from another village ' ' , 
i.e. is not a native of this village. 
(2) rest- or sleeping-quarters of a 

isi 2 [/] base of a tree, i.e. the 
surrounding space as far as the 
seeds or fruit of the tree fall, 
also isi^erha [.*'*]; cf. Is-iloko 

[.'-.]; v. szi [.j. 

Isi [ t J name of a group of villages 
between the Eho [\] and Agbo 
[ J roads, said to be the place 
from which the cult of the god 
Ake [/] started. 

isiams [_J "drawing water" 
(also called amenasi [...]): 
rain-making. There are no par- 
ticular rain-makers, and it can 
be performed by anybody who 
knows the leaves of which the 
charm is composed and the 
procedure of rain-making. If a 
village wants rain, it calls for 
some expert. Rain-making is 
occasionally employed with 
malicious purposes, e.g. in order 
to spoil the thanksgiving pro- 
cession of a new chief, or a 
man's house building ; cf. si ['] , 
ame [..]. 

isierha [_ J hauling timber logs 
along the track to a river (where 
they are left to drift down- 
stream); cf. si ['], erha [.']. 

Isietiero (pi.) "watchers of 

things": bodyguard of the Oba 
when he goes to an ugie [_]; 
they also played the main role 
among the oxi-as5 [."']; they 
carry charmed bows, arrows, 
and guns; this bodyguard con- 
sists of members of a sib of the 
same name that has its centre 
on the right side of Sakpoba 
Road in Benin City; the senior 
is chief Ekegbia [/J; their morn- 
ing greeting is la to se [ " J ; cf. si 

sro ["J, eflit.'YI;*'- egk£eL~\]. 
isiguabo ["'•] a game similar to 

iss n-aoa [*..'], but the seeds are 


thrown from the inside bend of 
the elbow to the palm of the 
hand ; counting follows the rules 
for iss n-ata [ ' ' ] and iss n-aua 
['./]; c/.igw* i [..]. 
Is-iloko [.*'.] "base of the Iroko 
tree": name of a village on the 

Onwena (Oguona [.%.]) river > 
terminus of a road ; ' ' Siluko 1 ' ; cf 


isiokuo [."%.] " drawing war ' ' : an 
ugie at which Ogu [/], the god 
of war, is worshipped. It in- 
cludes a procession of warriors, 
headed by the Dba, through the 
streets of Benin City, and the 
ceremony called amufi [...]; it 
is no longer performed now ; cf. 
si H, okuo [.\|. 

isixwia [...] a gang of women 
supplying the threads on which 
uma n-agws [/..] (small iron 
charms worn by everybody 
abstaining from new yam during 
agws [..]) are strung: worn by 
the Dba and his household. 

iso i [/] sky; iso n-orho [..%.] 
" sky of the wet season " : used as 
a term of comparison for some- 
thing white (perhaps the clouds 
are the tertium comparationis) ; 
ofua t)-iso n-orho [.'*."%.] it is 
white like the sky of the wet 
season. The term is also used as 
a praise-name of the present Oba : 
Akezua n-iso n-orho ["/.*%.] 
Akenzua II, who inherited the 
praise-name together with his 
name; cf. irhiso [VJ. 

iso 2 [/] a deep muscle-abscess; 
affects elderly and old people 

Iso [ ] name of a sib; v. egbee 

[ Si- 

isoko [ ' " ] (i) neighbourhood ; isok- 
edo unam-ugbota['* ,, ."^\.]do 

you farm in the neighbourhood 
of Benin City? (2) district; 
country (in contrast to town); 
cf. the tribal name of the Isoko. 

isoto [_ # ] procession accompany- 
ing oku [ / ] and oto [ / ] through 
the streets as part of the cere- 
mony of the second burial. 

isoke contentment ; isoks^of- 
ere n-oxwa [ \] content- 
ment is a great gain. 

isote [ ] rebellion; cf. sots ['.]; 

Yor.'ijots [...]; ate [..]. 

isu [.'] in: iy-isu ["*] interest (v. 
iyo ["]). The word is derived 
from the verb su ["] "to lead" 
because some additional money 
is "led" back to the giver of a 
loan on interest. 

isue [*'] (1) a black hairy worm 
or caterpillar, bigger than ara 
[ / ], about an inch long ; it causes 
whitlow on feet and fingers when 
touched. (2) whitlow brought 
forth by the preceding; if not 
attended to, it develops into 
a more serious affection called 
agaCisoso [.'."] when on a foot, 
or atowo [...], when on the 

isuma [...] a secret, or private, 
talk or agreement; isum-exoxo 
[.""]" holding a private, secret 
council": conspiracy (Akugbe); 
cf. se ['], uma [..]. 

isusu [...] (1) trouble, mainly 
from spirits, but also trouble 
arising from people, if it is 
very serious; od-isusu [.^.J a 
troublesome and wicked man 
who offends everybody and does 
not fear anything (he is thought 
to be driven by evil spirits). 
(2) evil spirits; also sfioi da 
[ /J. They are kept away 
from a village by means of a 


charm composed of things be- 
lieved to be taboo to them called 
et3i n-aya b-isusu [..."..]" things 
that are used to push the isusu," 
i.e. to drive them away; it is tied 
to a stick outside the village, 

v. bi [']; a curse: isusu w of-ala 
rue gbe [....*..'] lit. "trouble 
(or, evil spirits) (it is that) may 
enter you much ! " (or, possibly: 
your body); v. ukpokpo [.,.]; 
gbei [/]. 

ita, ["] (i) proverb. (2) story 
(mainly exemplifying a pro- 
verb). (3) meaning or moral 
contained in a proverb: ita-fe 
[ V.] ' 'its meaning". (4) history 
(with an application for life); 
with a moral ; cf. Yor. ita [ _ ] ; 
v. iue [..], fi [*]. 

ita [ _ ] feather-ordeal ; was mainly 
used to detect adultery, but also 
for theft; a feather was stuck 
into the defendant's tongue, 
and when it was difficult to pull 
it out again, i.e. when there was 
a pause, the woman was guilty; 
idiom.: ita ya gba [ /*] "the 
ordeal (-feather) is stuck": used 
when there is a slight confusion, 
and, consequently, a pause, e.g. 
in writing a letter, or in talking, 
when the ideas present them- 
selves too quickly to be ex- 
pressed in due order. 

itaba ["J tobacco; cf Port, 
tabaco; v. egboyo ['.J. 

Itakpa ["J the Nupe people; cf 
Yor. takpa [ \ ] . 

itaxue [ * "y ] material formerly used 
as uke [ *], the pad used in hair- 
dressing ; it is obtained from the 
plantain-bark; used also as a 
kind of sponge for "rubbing" 
(dob [/]) walls and floors of 
houses; for that purpose it is 

dipped in water that has been 
mixed with mud. 

* te [V] W continued menstrua- 
tion. (2) a parrot's disease 
hindering the development of its 
red tail feather (ebaxue [.%.]). 

itegbemu [....] pride (in a bad 
sense); cf. to 4 ['], egbe [/], mu 
['];v. ioaegbe [..J, uhiooe [ /\ . ]. 

itehie [' '] a very small kind of 
tomato said to taste bitter, and 
believed to originate from the 
faeces of the birds asese [' '] and 
esikpoyo [.**.]; the shrub is only 
a few feet high and yields much 
fruit; v. exwe ["]. 

iterha [ ] tree-felling (used by 
timbermen); cf. to ['], erha [/]. 

itebite [."*] (also e-) for ever; 
Oyodua keo - Osanobu - itebite 

['A...'--.] "God Almighty 
and Everlasting" (Akugbe). 

itie [/] "calling", i.e. saying the 
ogwega [ # *\J (divination) solu- 
tions as contrasted to their 
analysis and explanation (eria 
[.'Lria [J]); cf. tie [J]. 

itiebe [_] reading, lit. "book- 
calling"; cf. tie ebe[/]. 

itiezo [ J ' ' law-sui t-calling ' ' : 
bringing in a summons; cf. tie 
[J], ezo ["]; v. iyo ["]. 

itile [...] betting; cf. ta ['], 

ile ['.]. 

itoha[..J pity; cf. toha [/]. 

itohia [ J guinea- worm. 

itoku [ f-> ] (1) measuring timber 
logs with a rope; (2) plural of 
otSktt [...]; c/.tftf], okQfJ. 

itotaya [...J buttocks; cf. tota 
[•>];*- ikebe [...]. 

itoto ['/] a kind of cane; root is 
used as a medicine, and also as 
a magic preparation for making 
" one's body smooth and fleshy ", 
esp. for the Dba. 


itue ["\] a tree, Harungana mada- 
gascariensis ; said to be found on 
old farms (i.e. spots where there 
was once a farm: ogo [_]) only; 
contains a red latex. 

ive [/] promise (to give some- 
thing) ; cf ve [ ' ] . 

ivi [' ] (i) palm-kernels. (2) coco- 
nuts. (3) ivi eva ['..'] "two 
kernels": twins (dreaded at 
Use [ * * ] only) ; us-ivi eva fa 
r\.*V] (se2 [']) have you born 
("reached ") twins? ivi eha [ \ /] 

ivie [ ' ] beads ; ivi-ebo [ m " ' ] 

" European beads " : coral beads ; 

much used in the Oba's dress ; v. 

ede [*'], ewu [\J, Erhu [/]; 

ivie n-egi£r£ [..*%.,] small beads ; 

ivie n-ik5k5 [ '] (sgl. n-ok.) 

large beads; ivi-aw£ [."..] coral 

anklet (worn by the Dba and 

chiefs). L.R. p. 19. 
ivu [ J seed-yam (when sown and 

in the ground); cf. d-ivu [*J; 

v. igbi[/]. 
iue [ J a proverb given as a hint 

in conversation; allusion; of-ita 

f-ioe m£ [."'.*] he dropped me 

a hint with a proverb (ita [*']); 

cf. Yor. owe [ # • ] . 
iui [ ] scrotum. 

Ioi w eze [.".] a sib the founder of 
which was a man named Ogbfi- 
doyo [ m J' J] clan. Chief ObasEki 
[""'.] belongs to it. The clans 
morning greeting is la-oi w eze_o ! 
["••••]. The clan is said to have 
come from Osokwa [/J in the 
present Agbor Division of Benin 
Province, i.e. from Eka-Ibo terri- 
tory during the reign of the Oba 
DsEOEdE [//], Probably the name 
means ' ' sons of the eze [ ' J " (the 
Ibo-word for " ruler"); cf om 
[/]; v. egbze [."%]. 

iui£ [.J loneliness; ioiEro [_'] 
" loneliness is reigning (?) " : time 
of the fiercest heat, between 
two and four o'clock, when 

* everybody has retired into his 
house; this is one of the best 
times for thieves. During this 
time, the antelope ErhuE [/] may 
be met with, coming out to eat 
ocro; cf. viz [J] (?). 

ioiEkpo [ ] a snake : short, simi- 
lar to a viper and of the same 
colour as a viper; jumps; poison- 
ous; v. £ny£ [ ']. 

ioaegbe [ ] self-conceit; cf. 6a 
L/],egbe"[/];v. ittgbemu [....], 
uhioCE [.*%.], uzeue [.*%.]. 

iw- [J ten (in the following com- 
positions only): iw-eva [ t J t ] 
twelve; iw-era [ /] thirteen; 
iw-ens [ J ] fourteen; cf. igbe 


iw- [J household society at the 
Eguae [..]; in (1) Iw-ebo [^J 
another society of the three 
main societies; it is concerned 
with the Dba's dresses; the 
senior chiefs are UnwagwE [\ J 
and £rfoo ["J; the young people 
in it who have not yet any title, 
are called ibteruya [..'.], as in 
Iw-£guae. (2) iw-egi£ '[/•] the 
Dba's defensive charmers or evil- 
wishers against his private 
enemies ("implicators"), a divi- 
sion of the ewaisE [...]; (3) iw- 
ehg [ ' ] a division of the 
Dba's ewaise [...]; they take 
care of some of his charms. 
(4) Iw-£guae [/\ J "society of 
the 8guae": one of the three 
main household societies; it 
contdns the personal servants 
of the Oba ; all the emada [ _ J 
belong to them; the young 
people at the Iw-£guae are 

called ibieruya [..*.], like those 
in the Iw-ebo and Ib-iwe; 

senior chiefs of this society are 
Esere [ ## J and Obazenu [".']. 
(5) iwoki '[."%.] a gang of people 
living on the right side of Ik- 
poba Road; they sew leather 

boxes (v. isskpoki [ ]) ; during 

eclipses of the moon they per- 
form some sacrifices which were 
believed (only some old people 
believe in it nowadays) to have 
the effect of restoring the moon, 
for eclipses were believed to fore- 
stall evil. This performance is 
called dol-uki [/.] yi ['] "to 
repair the moon". For the 
missing vowel in iw- cf. Ibiwe 
[.*%,]; perhaps the heading 
should be iwe [ # J. 
iwako, iwaako[ _J greed, covetous- 
ness ; cf. wo [ ' ] , ako [ ] ; v. iwaro 


iwaro [ # # t ] greedy snatching away 
what does not really belong to 
one ; taking food that is not on 
one's own side of the plate; 
Pidgin : fitihae [. (fitting eye) 
or trongahae [,.\] "strong 
eye"; cf. wo aro [..]; v. 
iwako [..J. 

iwe anything changing 

periodically, e.g. (i) shedding 
. leaves (of deciduous trees; most 
trees, except ouiaxe [ m # # ] and udi 
[/], shed their leaves). (2) phase 
of the moon. (3) occasional lean- 
ness of human beings, v. r-iwe 

[,-\];iw-oki [;\.]. 

I were [ . ] another name for the 
Jekri people; v. Isskirj [.."%.]• 

iwero [ J (1) sense, e.g. in 
knowing one's duties; common 
sense; iw£{;-omo na mahess n- 
iyayarhi-ere [/.V ',/'/.] ''the 
sense of this child is not yet 

sufficient that I may take him", 
viz. with me, on a certain enter- 
prise. (2) wisdom (in judging a 
palaver) ; iwero seems mainly to 
refer to the sense of justice. 
(3) (pi.) wise, sensible people; 
cf. wo [']. 

iwowo ['"] thin planks used in 
building the walls of a shack; 
v. owa [/]. 

iwu 1 [ . . ] tribal marks ; men have 
seven iwu, not including the 
face-marks on the forehead, v. 
ixaro ["Y], viz. iwu ades-swse 
[."*.%] " marks of the middle 
of the chest" (one on each 
side?); iw-ugbefe [.*%..] "rib- 
marks" (one on each side): 
a long mark stretching from 
under the shoulder along the 
ribs to the loins; more side- 
wards than oo-iwu [."%,]; i wu 
iyeke [.'...] "back-marks" (one 
on each side); starts from the 
beginning of the upper arm, and 
goes along the back to the thigh ; 

v. ou-iwu [,*Y] ( v - ou * [."!) ( one ) 
mark along the left side of the 

body ; aberhe [."%.] mark on the 
abdomen. Women are said to 
have all these marks doubled, so 
that they have fourteen marks 
altogether; at Use ['*] only 
the women are said to have the 
same marks as the men. Here, 
as well, the marks on the fore- 
head (urebo [...]) are not in- 
cluded; v. ur-eyele [*'..] (not 
tribal marks !) . 

iwu 2 [ J progeny of the first 
generation : child, children ; also : 
om-iwu [f\ J; v. eye [/], ihiehis 
[73, sakpafsyodi yabi- 
ona [" 'J. 

iwuysCs [,."\] nice appearance; 
iwuyeoe fueye tte gbe [, ,"%../'••] 


your appearance pleases me very 
much (attracts me); cf. ys [J]. 
ixa [ J bad smell (used as a com- 
plement of the verb wia [J])\ 
in human beings it is attributed 
to the individual not having 
been properly washed after his 
birth ; it also refers to the smell 
of some animals, e.g. the rat 
oxa [ ] . Other bad smells are 
ewia [* ]; cf. oxa [ ]; v. nwihi 

ixaro [ "\J tribal marks on the 
forehead used by men (a vanish- 
ing custom) and women; cf. aro 
[..]; v. iwu i [.J. 

ixi [..] revenge ; cf. iriaixi [...]; 
v. ria [J], 

ixia [/] transformation, spec, into 
an animal, etc. by magic; ixia 
m-oha gbe [.">*] transformation 
is terrible ("frightens much"); 
cf. xia [J]. 

ixiaoo [ ' _ ] Ocro, Hibiscus escu- 
lentus ; the best species is : ixiau- 
eou "mist-ocro", i.e. ocro 

planted during the time when 
mist falls (from September to 
February). Probably of foreign 
(Port.?) origin; v. ora [/], 
ohukpo [ '*], gbe [']. 

ixie(e)gbe [ # J mourning ; affliction 
(Akugbe, but there written 
without the e- following ixis-); 

ixisegbe keo-irioya rus [ J] 

"your affliction and disgraced 
state" (Akugbe); cf xie [J], 

ixioi [" ] a tree, Newbouldia 
laevis; it is believed to be the 
oldest tree in the world ; planted 
as inyato [_J at every newly 
founded village or ' 1 camp ' ' (ago 
[/]), and used in the composi- 
tion of the shrines of all the gods 
(but not of erha [ " ] and iye ["*]). 

1x0 [..] i 1 ) blood-letting : a piece 
of cotton which has been soaked 
in oil is lit inside a special kind 
of calabash (called uko n-aya 
mu w Ixo [*..'*'.] "calabash used 
for blood-letting"), and a cut is 
made from which the blood is 
to be drawn (mainly in the 
thigh), the calabash is tightly 
pressed on this cut, and when 
the light goes out, it sticks to 
the spot and draws the blood. 
Used as a remedy for reducing 
swellings and muscle-pains. (2) 
a mark on the forehead that for- 
merly was a sign of a free-born 
man; also ix-aro [*~\.] (tone!); 
only few people have it now- 
adays ; it is still a little more 

N frequent among Binis from 
Akure and Ishan people. 

ixu [.W (country-made) farmer's 
matchet ; billhook ; any matchet 
may be called ixu when used in 

Ixue [ ] names of two Bini 
villages, seats of Dxwahe [J t ] 
shrines; there is Ixue n-iro [_* *] 
and Ixu-ot)i_obo [."".] lit. 
" Ixue of the doctor's child". 

ixuiwu [/Y] hatred; ixuiwu bu-§ 
gb e [. . '*] " hatred is too much 
(with) you": you are too full of 

iy- [J score; twenty (in connec- 
tion with following numerals 
only); iy-eva [/•] "two score": 
forty; iy-eha [/*] three score: 
sixty; iy-ene [ '*] four score: 
eighty ; iy-ise [/•] five score : a 
hundred; iy-iy-eha [/*•] "three 
score times three score": 3600 
(St Mark 4, 20) . 

iya [' ] an exclamation of annoy- 
ance used by boys, e.g. when 
attacked by a younger brother, 


but forbidden to strike back, or 
when bullied by a stronger boy ; 
iya, uuede [\, JJ,] oh, are you 

coming again? cf Yor. iya [..]. 

iy a [..] (i) ditch; the term in- 
cludes natural cavities similar 
to a ditch. (2) the big ditch (and 
wall) round Benin City said to 
be built by the Dba Oguola ['J ] 
(Egh. Hist. pp. 7, 8). 

iyabo [ ' • ] forgiveness ; c/. ya HI, 

. ObD[/]. 

iyabo bail; security; omi- 

gf £ u-iyabo J he took him 

as (lit. "in") security: he took 
him to stand bail for him (mis 

. U]); ya [■](?), obo[/]. 

iyama [ /\ ] (1) mark of owner- 
ship or identification (e.g. a 
mark made on one's yam, or, a 
sign by which one knows a 
certain man) . (2) scar ; cicatrice ; 
c/. ama [*J. 

iyare [.\J welcome home; said 
to a warrior returning from 
war, or to a man returning from 
a journey; it was interpreted as 
"safe arrival"; v. gbe [']. Also 
used as a name; c/ re [']. 

iyarhaoe [ '/] slave (idiomatic 
expression); cf ya [*](?), rhafie 

lyase ['/] the "Iyashere", one of 
the most important chiefs of the 
Bini people ; head of the Eyasuo 
N-ore [..."] an d chief war-lord. 

iyayi [/•] faith; iyayi w ere ma 
s-ou-oke .\) "his faith 

does not make me content " : his 
faith does not inspire me with 
confidence (said, e.g. of a 
Christian who is still adhering 
to heathen practices); cf. ya [*], 

yi [']. 

iye [**] mother; iy-ue ['J] your 
mother (sgl.); iy-ua [ J] your 

mother (pi.), iy-odede 
grandmother (paternal and ma- 
ternal); iye o-odede ['.*..] my 
grandmother; iy-erha ['"] "fa- 
ther's mother", or iye n-obi-erha 
[\ ] "mother who has borne 
the father": paternal grand- 
mother ; iy-iye ["'] or iye n-ob- 

*y e ['.""] maternal grand- 
mother. iy-au-5t3a [ * \ J a man's 
mother-in-law; also iy-oooxa ve 
[".."] my mother-in-law. iy- 
oba ["'] "mother of the Dba": 
the Queen-mother who resides 
at Uselu [./] (cf orhu [/]). 
iy-owa ['*•] "mother of the 
house": the woman who is in 
charge of a household, i.e. either 
the house-owner's mother or, if 
she is dead, his senior wife, 
iye n-agbo [*/\.] h*t. "mother of 
this world": mistress; lover, 
iy-efioi J (also oded-efioi 
[".'.]) "mother of the dead, or, 
of the juju": title of the senior 
man(?) in the Ovia [/] society; 
v. ekeze [ ]. Idiom. : mu^omo 
y-egb-iy-se [..'."%] lit. "totake 
a child to its mother's body" 
(i.e. on her lap) : to end a matter 
(by putting things where they be- 
long) ; cf iyeye [ ' "], eyeye [ ']. 
iyeke [..J (1) back (of body). 
(2) back (of something, of part 
of body); behind; iyek-obo [//] 
back of the hand; iyek-owe [ ' ] 
upper side of the foot ; iyek-owa 
[.'."] back of the house; back- 
yard (latrine) ; behind the house ; 
iyek-ogbe [/'J male servants' 
quarter in the compound ; iyek- 
ikpoba [/..,] name of the 
neighbourhood behind the river 
Ikpoba [..J. iyek-iyeke [.JJ] t 
[ . . .J] backwards ; iy ek-iyeke w 
ola *e [ . . J . / -J] " backwards he 

is going along"; v. igbuzebu 
[ ] ; a curse : iyek-iyeke ude ye 
(or-k-ude Y e[J-J])[.Jj;j] 
" backward you (may) fall (con- 
tinuously) i.e. may you be- 
come poorer and poorer, sink 
lower and lower, 
iyerhe [_ J "setting fire": (time 
of) burning the undergrowth on 
a clearing previous to making a 
farm; iyerhs ssne [ #< /\] has the 
time for burning the farm-land 
already come? cf. ya ['], erhs 

iyeye [ ] a rich woman without 
children; a kind of nickname; 
cf. iye ['']. 

iye [ m J an insect found on chickens. 

iyegbu [/] powdered form of 
ubka [ m _ ] (corn-cake) ; care has 
to be taken in eating it to 
prevent it getting into the 

iyi ['] rule, made by some group, 
e.g. those applying in a "so- 
ciety"; iyi na oy-agbo hia no 
[//*.'*] "this rule is of all the 
world": this rule applies to 

iyobo [_J help ; iyob-esi urhie ms 
na [/.;•-.] "(it is) good help 
you have given me (this) ' ' : you 
have helped me well; iyobo n- 
urhie me na ke gbe [, . J\J'] 
"the help you gave me now (lit. 
this) is very suitable": your 
help is just in time; cf. ya [*], 
obo [/]. 

iyods [ #< J "going road": help in 

childbirth; cf. yo ['], ode [/]. 
iyoxo ['/] (i) coco-yam. (2) iyox- 

oto [*.~V] "coco-yam of the 
ground": lily ( ? ) ; is planted in 
pots at the shrines of Osii. 
(3) iyox-eze [\"\.] "coco-yam of 
river": a tree, Rinorea elliottii; 

wood is flexible and used for 
constructing traps ; it is also put 
in crocodile's mouths in order to 
prevent them from biting, as it 
is very tough. Then they are no 
longer dangerous and can be 
tied with ropes. 

iyoha [_J (1) pawn; human 
beings can be pawned as well as 
things, the pawned person hav- 
ing to serve the creditor until 
the debt is paid. This service 
does not reduce the amount of 
the debt, but only serves to 
"quench the creditor's anger". 
Being pawned is not tanta- 
mount to slavery, as the victim 
may leave the creditor if badly 
treated. (2) the blossom of the 
ikposa [ " J tree ; it plays a role 
in a children's play: if an iyoha 
[...] (blossom) drops from the 
tree, children pick it up and 
offer it to a friend; he is then 
reminded by the words: imu w 
iyoha y-uo-bo [."...*] "I have 
put a pawn into your hands", 
and must pay seven palm- 
kernels for it ; cf.Yov. iwofa [...]. 

iyoyo [ _ J (1) bushy end of things ; 
iyoy-oka [/'J tassel of corn 
(maize). (2) tail; iyoy-esi [.*"] 
horse-tail. (3) fringe, in iyoy- 
£de [ ' ] fringe of native crown ; 
cf. yoyoyo [...]. 

izabo [ * ' * ] shoulder ; cf. abo [ / ] . 

izaduma [...'] a drum shaped like 
em-sdo [/*] being played when 
chiefs were sent on errands by 
the Oba, or when they went 
round the country requisitioning 

izagodo [ Y ] empty kerosene tin ; 

cf. Yor. jagodo [.••]. 
izagbsds [*/V] a dance mostly 

danced by the iyele [\J and 


itoyae age-classes, but also 
by women; Yor.? v. ema i [.J. 
izaxws [ ] a ceremony that is 
part of the "second burial": it 
takes place two days before the 
isoto [ ] (procession with the 
ot3 [.']); a goat is killed at the 
gate of the deceased's house, 
and afterwards there is a dance 
through the town during which 
the arms of the deceased's oldest 
son are supported by men. The 
emota [ /\ ] tree on ski w oba [ / * * ] 
is visited and given chalk and 
cowries; v. ikpowia [ ], ukooe 

. [A.],arha[..]. 

izazako [, . . ] a red antelope said 
to be as fast as a hare; it is 
believed to run continuously on 
some days, and only to walk on 

ize n-ofua [./•] "white ize": a 
kind of small crawfish found in 
rivers; it is used in soups; cf 
Jekri ide [/]. 

izeuudu ] "being hard in the 
heart (or entrails)": obstinacy; 
oo-Izeoudu no [ % ' ] he is an 
obstinate man ; cf ze [ ' ] , o-udu 

. CO" 

ize [ ] a tree, Treculia africana; 
the fruit is big and round, and 
contains big seeds ("rice"), v. 
eooxo [ /y ] ; iz-ebo [*'•]" Euro- 
pean ize": rice; iz-eni [*'•] 
" elephant-izE " : a tree, Allan- 
blackia floribunda; the fruit is 
long and similar to a cucumber ; 
eaten by porcupines which, 
therefore, can be killed near 
these trees at night ; the wood 
is used as firewood only. The 
tree is also called iz-oxas ["\] 
porcupine-izs " ; cf. omize [ m _ ] . 

izexede [ _ ] open shelter con- 
sisting of four poles and a roof, 

or, a house the walls of which 
are not yet built, or, a primitive 
juju shrine that is open at the 

izlegbe [ ## J endurance ; cf zi [J], 
egbe [/]. 

['/] murderer; iziya r-ode 
n-uwa rie ni [\'\..JJ] there 
is a murderer on that road 
where you are going; cf. d-iziya 

izobo [/\J feeding evil spirits, 
witches, or the Ogu [/] and Osu 
[.'], Ake [/] or any juju of 
other people (in case their in- 
fluence "troubles" the giver of 
izobo); it is impossible to give 
this offering to one's own Ogu, 
Osu, etc. The izobo may be given 
as a measure of defence as well 
as in order to injure somebody. 
It is done at the junction of 
roads, e.g. at that of the roads 
leading to Siluko and Skshua, 
in one's own backyard, or in 
still other places. The food 
is prepared at home and by 
private individuals; there is no 
slaughtering as in a real sacrifice ; 
only a chicken may be given, 
and that is killed at home; v. 
ewa [/]. 

izohu [ ] anger; provocation 
( Akugbe) ; oO-izohu (feno 
"he is a man of my provoca- 
tion " : he is a man that annoys 
me; cf. ze [*], ohu [. J.^ 

izoinyauaxe [ ] "taking yam 

out of the pot": taking a dead 
child out of the womb (v. 
ogida [/.]); c/.zo [J], inya[/], 
o- [.], axe [/]. 

izola [* '] (a modern word): 
European week; same as uzola 

1ZU [ . . ] even number ; v. okpa [ " ] . 



izunu [ m , . ] grumbling about food 
one dislikes, and refusing it ; c/. 
ze ['], unu [/]. 

(i)k- an element of word-formation 
used in reduplications; it con- 
veys a generalising idea, e.g. 
k-exoek-exoe, exoek-exoe ['J \] 
"with all one's mind' ' (Akugbe) 
from exoe [* ] " mind ' ' ; k-oi5aik- 
ooa [V.] and [,JX\ " every- 
body " from ova "man"; 
c/. k-ugbaik-eye [*>*.], and 
Yoruba formations like enikeni 


ka i H to confess an evil deed, 
especially witchcraft and similar 
harmful practices; oxuo na ka 
[ J t '] this woman is confessing 
to a misdeed (but for adultery 

v. bu [/]). 
ka 2 ['] to dry (intrans.) ; erha na 

yaka akeyae nwina [.\'\."V] 
this wood shall dry before start- 
ing to work with it ; erha na kae 
[ " ^] this wood is dry ;c/. kakai 

[■;']; kae 3 Ul 
ka 3 [*] to buy (not used of oil, 

only of beverages); yak-anyo 
n-orhierhie re (or gu x>z [/]) 

[J '•] go and buy sweet (or, 

palatable) wine for me! (lit. 
" (and) come") (the syllable k-a 
is rather long) . 
ka 4 ['] to count; ka-limoi ni 
n-utama 6-ilu n-oxi [..V\/7] 
"count those oranges so that 
you (can) tell me how many 
they are!" ka ['] y-o [*%] to 
repeat the formula of an oath; 
ka y-o o-en-oyav-os he [y.'JJ] 
repeat (the formula) as he will 
(or, shall) swear it! k-iyo ["] 
to count money; to reckon; to 
judge the worth of something; 
c/. Yor. ka [.]. 

ka ['] fua ['] to expel somebody 
out of the £guae [,J, for an 

ka [J bare; ysloois y-o toe ka 
U...J.] don't sleep on the bare 
ground ! cf. kska [ mt ] . 
ka [J], ['] an auxihary verb in- 
dicating that the subject is first 
in performing the action ex- 
pressed by the main verb; 
t-ot-oo-okao n-okanwina xe ima 
f \ " 1 he was the first 
among us to finish the work: 
lit. "he is the first man who first 
worked waiting for us" (r. is not 
nasalised); Ozo kaxia ne [,' J"] 
Ojo is going as the first. 

kada [~\J formula of giving 
thanks to the host after a meal 
(used by men); also used as a 
salute to somebody who has 

k-adess [.'.]; cf. ke i [']. 

kae i [J] in ka-unu [..']" to purify 
the mouth": i.e. to purify one- 
self after eating something that 
is taboo; v. wua [J], 

kae 2 [J] (i) to dress, or to 
smoothen, wood (by means of a 
matchet); ka^erha na papaapa 

[ / ] make this (piece of) 

wood flat! (2) to cry, of a 
squirrel (similarity with the 
noise made by dressing wood?). 

kae 3 [J] to dry; ika-ukpo na 

[...J.] I am d rvm § ( or > I dried) 
this cloth; c/.kakai [ *], ka2 [']. 

kae 1 [J] (1) to build, e.g. a box, 

door, table, etc. ; mainly wooden 

things; ka-ekpeti na me 

" build this box for me " : make 

a box out of this (e.g. out of a 

packing case) ! (2) to nail ; y-ise 

ka-ekpeti na me [.','. J nail 

this box for me ! kae [J] mu 

t^ugbugbe [....'•] to crucify 


(Bibl., not of sacrificial calci- 
fication). (3) to cover (roof) 
with wood(?) and corrugated 
iron ; v. ekpamaku [ " ■ ] ; cf. Yor. 

kae 2 [J] (1) to fill, of pipe only, 
v. v5 \ ka-ukoko na [,'J.] 
fill this pipe! (2) to load, of 
gun; ka-(o)sisi na me [/"/] 
load me this gun ! 

kag 3 [J] to touch; oy-obo ka-fe 
[,''J,]he (took hand) touched it ; 
cf. Yor. ka [ ] . 

kae 4 [J ] in ka'^uko [/J (a) to be 
a messenger to the Dba, col- 
lecting tribute in the country; 
those messengers used to op- 
press the countryside a good 
deal, hence : (b) to annoy some- 
body by giving him (unwanted) 
advice in the form of reproaches ; 
to pester; ys^ika o-uko [' ' ] 
don't pester me any more ! 

kagukagu [••••] lean ; used with 
the verb ye [']; cf. gukaa [••]; 
for other degrees of leanness in 
a descending scale v. gukaa, 
sigssigs [•••]; rhiamarhiama 
[••*]; sigosigo [*••]; simosimo 

kaka 1 [/] to dry ; to be dry (in- 
trans.) used of leaves e.g., hence 
it is a plural form ; cf. ka 2 [ ' ] . 

kaka 2 [/] to be hard; skpede 
n-okakae [.",". a cross-bow 
that is difficult to tend (occurs 
in a proverb). 

kakaaka 1 ['*'] tightly; firmly 
(tied); v. ki [*]. 

kakaaka 2 [ ' " ] describes a very 
profound darkness; ebiebi so 
kakaaka [.'V ] it was very 
dark; ame bi kakaaka [..'•"] 
the sky is very dark (lit. "the 
water", i.e. the sky before a 
rain); v. nununu [•••]. 

kakabo [./] (to do) properly; 
kakabo gb-st-asa. [ ' * * ] flog 
(whip) him properly \ ' ' 

k-anyo [/]; cf ka 3 [*]. 

kaoa [/] to be small; short; oo-ue 
na kaoa gbe this your 

child is too (or: very) small! 
cf. ukaoaos [/^ ]. 

ke 1 ['] to be near; this verb is 
used a good deal for indicating 
local relationship, e.g. k-adese 
[/.] to be near the middle; 
ikpihiabo n-ok-adese [ " ' ] 
the middle finger, k-eoa []\] 
"to be near here"; n-ok-eoa 
[ "\ ] the nearest one. k-od-aro 
[/Y] to be in front ; ik-od-aro ns 
[.' V.M I preceded him. k-odo 
[A] "to be near there"; n-ok- 
odo ["\] "which is near over 
there", i.e. the furthermost of 
some objects, k-oto [' ] to be 
nethermost, k-uxumi [' ] to 
be uppermost ; ukpu na k-iixuou 
n-eOirebo [V .'..;••] this cup is 
on top of the plate; v. dia 1 [*]. 

ke 2 ['] an auxiliary that (1) links 
up events: "and then..."; 
okeru w ee [/-\] "and then he 
did it"; it is often used with 
a following yi, but also with 
ya: okeyaru^Ee [/-^] "and he 
was doing it" (same as okeyiru 

[.'"%]); okeyi r u w se [ ' ~\] 
"and then he did it" (same as 
okeru^se [."•>]), and with oe: 
okeoe-ru se [//\] "and he did 
it". (2) with low tone: "before", 
e.g. imi-5-ugbugb£hia w okekpao 

[....' '".J] I always see him 
before he leaves. 

ke 3 [ * ] (1) to come from a certain 

place; sdo ike de [/ 'J] "from 

Benin (it is that) I am coming"; 

ok-uw-owa yade [."'-J] he is 

coming out of the house. (2) 


" from " ; k-eoa yari-edo ibi^ik-ise 

nyajy-eva no [.Y . ." ".7 ' * •] 
from here to Benin is 45 miles. (3) 
"since", in k-eua yaxia [.Y] 
since that time: lit. "from there 

k e 1 [J] ( I ) t° De suitable; it is 
used impersonally with a follow- 
ing subjunctive introduced by 
n- and conveys something like 
the idea of the English "ought 
to"; okere n-afe-oi n-owiti 
[.J.'..' J.] "it is suitable that 
one should know the thing that 
is lost": one ought to know 
what is lost. (2) to put some- 
thing in the right position (so 
that it does not fall) ; to support ; 
k-axe ni ese [/*/] put this pot 
in a safe position! k-ewu [/] to 
put three stones up as a support 
for a cooking-pot; to prepare a 
place for cooking ; imi-oe o-okewu 

o-eye n-inay-eua [/ "YY 

I saw him preparing a cooking- 
place (at the time) when I went 
there (na ['] or [%]); cf. 
ikewu [.*']. k-eti [/] to rest, 
gu ue k-eti xerhe [.*/*'] let me 
rest a little! v. ko-eti [_'], kok- 

6tl [ *]. 

ke2 [>] in ke [/] ikia [\] to 
be the result of something; 
ok-et-ikia [./J it results from it. 

keke [/] to push (in a crowd) , to 
jostle; yekeke 6e ['.."%] don't 
push me! okeke Ce [./*] he 
pushed me; v. rua [J], sua [J]. 

(e)k-es-ogba [ . " . ] twenty-five : 
"remain five (to) thirty" (by 
young people ise nya^ugie [.'**•] 
"five above twenty" is used); 
cf ke 1 [J]. 

(e)k-es-ugie [//] fifteen; something 
like "remain five (to) twenty"; 
cf. ke 1 [J]. 

keoe [ J a conjunction linking up 
nouns and pronouns: "and"; 
Ozo keu-au-Dfe xia sisiuusi 

[..../.. ..] °j° an( i his w ^ e 
have gone since some time; cf. 

ke ['], ve [J], t>e [*]. 

k-eoa [Yl ; cf. ke 1 ['] and ke 3 [']. 

k-ewu [/]; of. ke 1 [J] m 

ke 1 [J] to remain ; to be left ; also 
ke [J] re [']; ema ni ke re 
l.J'J'] that fufu is left over, 
remains, ke xerhe ke xerhe [/ V I 
nearly; lit. "remains little", cf. 
Pidgin "lef small", ede kere o 
J an old greeting, used by 
old men and chiefs, its being 
obsolete making it the more 
distinguished : good night ! 
("day is left", viz. a little). 
The numbers beginning with 
(e)k-, as e.g. (e)kesugie [//], 
(e)kigbesiyise [."."]> seem to be 
derived from sentences like "it 
remains (five) reach (se [']) 
twenty", "it remains ten reach 
a hundred". 

ke(e) 2 [J] (1) to be quick; oke 
Cue gbe [,J J'] "it is too quick 
to (with) you": you do it too 
quickly; obo kere o-inwina ni ne 

[.' J ... J\] "has the hand been 
quick in that work already?": 
is that work already finished? 
(short: obo ke ne ra [,'J\,]). 
This phrase is used when asking 
in the presence of strangers 
whether food has already been 
prepared; a more direct re- 
ference to food would be im- 
polite. (2) it is used in a 
causative sense, meaning some- 
thing like ' ' to hurry somebody ' ' , 
in the following construction: 
ok-ore ru w ee ne, makes-eoa (se 

□) L/'Y.'.Y hurried 
him on to do it (already), and 


then we arrived there": he had 
already done it when we arrived 
there (v. da [ ' ] ; " to do something 
out of one's own accord"). 
(3) in the phrase oyakee [_J] 
(lit. "if there is time"?) it is used 
to qualify a statement about 
something happening in the 
future : ' ' probably ' ' , ' ' perhaps ' ' , 
v. yaa ["]; oyakse, oyare axwe 
[ . . J . ' " . ] ne will probably come 

k-6bo ['.]; cf. ko [']. 

kseke [~Y] with; together with; 
eni k£ek-ako-fe [,'\,J,] the 
elephant together with its teeth 
(v. Uke keoe arhuaro). 

k-£hi [*.]; cf. ko [*]. 

keka [ t J (1) bare ; y-ows kska ya 
de [.J.'J] come with bare 
feet! (2) (in) vain; empty; 
ineffective; em kska na [.J..] 
lit. " it is a vain thing " ; said e.g. 
of somebody's intrigues which 
the speaker thinks to be harm- 
less and negligible; ogua_£OE 
kska [...J..] he is talking 
empty words ("word of mouth ") 
i.e. he has no power to do 
anything. (3) only; okpa keka 
[*'..] one only; cf. ka [J. 

keks [/] to rot, e.g. meat, leaves, 
cloth, wood, or a corpse; ya s- 
ukpo na rae y-uw-ams o-eoa, 
oxakeks (ss [']) [" V./"..\7V3 
who left this cloth in the water 
here, it will rot ! 

k£t£k£t£ [ ] ass; occasionally 
brought by Hausa people. 

k-Ett[/]; c/.kei [>]. 

ki 1 ['] (1) to look for fruit at 
the base of a tree ; gi^ayaki oti§ 
[.J J'"] let us go and look for 
otie ! (2) to inspect, e.g. traps. 

ki 2 ['] to tie tightly; oy-iri ki w E 
kakaaka [/••/"] lit. "he took 

a rope and tied it tightly"; v. 
tua 1 [J]. 

ki 3 ['] to dazzle; cf. oki ['J. 

ki [J] (1) to coil; of snakes, 
caterpillars, centipedes; to curl 
up; of the Scaly Anteater; 
enye n-imi£-f£ wabsye Cs okeki 
[ /] "the snake which I 

saw to-day, it (suddenly: wa) 
saw me, it coiled". (2) to cower, 
in ki [J] re ["] ; oki re kpukpuu- 
kpu [ t J* t a J he cowered; feeling 
cold; with crossed arms and 
hands resting on shoulders. 
(3) to curl (of hair) ; eto n-okifi 
[..V.] curls. (4) to coagulate, 
e.g. of owo [.']-soup or starch; 
but for oil, rhu£ [J] is used ; owo 
na kiti £S£se [.'.J..''] this owo 
soup has properly coagulated, 
i.e. it is still liquid; iterat. 
kino [/]. 

kie [J] (1) to open, e.g. door, 
window, padlock; oki-urho [./.] 
he opened the door. (2) to be 
open ( ? ) . (3) to fold ; m-oki-ewa na 

la w owa u-am£ de [J ' ' J] 

1 ' it was I who folded this mat 
(and took it) into the house when 
rain was coming". (4) in ki- 
ewua [ m "\] to wake the Dba by 
imitating a cock's crow. 

(e)k-igbe s-iy-eha [/'/'] fifty: 
" remain ten reach sixty" (twenty 
times three); cf. ks 1 

(e)k-igbe s-iy-eha [/ \'\] ahundred 
and ten: "remain ten reach 
twenty times six"; cf. ks 1 

(e)k-igbe s-iy-en£ [.*'."] seventy: 
"remain ten reach eighty" 
(twenty times four) ; cf. k£ 1 [J]. 

(e)k-igbe s-iy-is£ [/'/•] ninety: 
"remain ten reach a hundred" 
(twenty times five) ; cf. k£ 1 [J]. 

k-i^o ["]; cf. ka 4 [']. 


k-ihu ['J to give a present to a 
visitor, e.g. kola, or drinks; 
Egh. Hist. 

kinokinokino [".."] plaited ; wo- 
ven, e.g. as a pattern, v. oba [/]; 

' used with the verb ye [']; cf. 
ki [J]. 

kisi [..] a descriptive adverb 
accompanying the verb sa [J] 
"to jump"; osafs kisi [,J„ t ] 
"he jumped hard" (occurs in a 
saying) . 

kirn [ '] (i) to hit, strike; kioi w e 
[/J "hit him"; cry of en- 
couragement to somebody who is 
fighting ; v. iluma [ , . . ] ; v. op [ . . ] . 

kiza [/] to be foolish, senseless; 
ukiza [* "M are you mad? v. 

ko['] to fold, a pad (ukuokif'J); 
cf. kuo [J]. 

ko i [J] (i) to gather, in ko^eti, 
ku w £ti [..'] to gather strength; 
to stop doing something ; to leave 
off; ku-sti, ysyiru w £e [./7\] 
stop, don't do it any more ! i.e. a 
task he was ordered to perform 
before. (2) to set a fractured 
bone by tying a small ' ' bamboo ' ' 
mat with medicines on it to the 
broken part; Ozo bu^obo, gi-a 
mu £ gi-Doa o-uxegie n-oku £re 

[/• T -.r"Y...\7.] "0)0 has 
broken an arm, let us take him 
to somebody at Uxegie that he 
may set it", 
ko 2 [J] in ko w uro [/J; ko-ro 
[/J to wax (of the moon); the 
ipf . is expressed by the auxiliary 
f£ko [J] only; cf. uro [.J, 
ho uro [.'.]; v. uki [.J, vEwae 

k-od-aro [."%.], k-odo k-oto 

['.]; of.kei [']. 
koikoi ["] describes the sound of 
beating fufu. 

koko 1 [/] to gather; si w £(e) 
koko ["/] gather it (also [*%]) ; 
w-ifa si koko x£ C£-y-ide (iye 

[*.]) ['J....'. J] tefl them 
to gather and wait for me for 
I am coming! kok-erhg [ ' ] to 
make a fire; kok-erhg n-al-eui 
[.7.Y] make a fire so that 
we can cook something! kok- 
£ti [_'] "to gather strength": 
to rest; kok-£ti xerhe n-uyade 
[..'""J] re st a while before 
you come; lit. "that you will 
come" (uteyade [\' J] is also 
possible); cf. ko 1 [J]. 
koko 2 [/] to look after; to feed; 
ukok-omo na £s-erio [...'.. \/] 
are you feeding this child pro- 
perly (like that) ? 
kokomEm£ [ " . . ] cucumber; EngL 
kokooko [ • • * ] hard ; used with the 
verb ze ['] or ye [*], e.g. of 
bread, pounded yam, or cas- 

koyo ['•] a very common greeting 
among the Binis ; koyo-ko [ ' * • ] 
"good day (or, hullo!), friend", 
v. oko [/]; koyo-ga ['••] "good 
day, sir"; koyo-te [*-..] 
"good day, cousin''; v. oga [ '1 

ko [ ] (1) to plant. (2) to put up 
a god's, ancestral, or guardian 
spirit's shrine, in k-£bo [*J "to 
construct one's juju"; k-£hi [*J 
"to construct one's Lord", i.e. 
guardian spirit ; cf. ukofe [ . *\J . 

ko 1 ['] to be foolish; okog*[/\] 
he is foolish; oko [/] he is at 
times foolish ; oko gbe [ . * * ] he is 
very (or, too) foolish; stronger 
expressions are : ok-ukou-oya gbe 
[."'•/] " he is foolish with a dis- 
graceful foolishness"; and ok- 
ukoi5-ozuo gbe (v. ozuo ([ ] 

[/•./]; c/.uk5(3E 1X1 




ko 2 ['] to move about in search 
of food; to browse (of cattle); 
oteko yo k5 re u-et5a si [.""...'] 
"it was moving to and fro here 
before"; said e.g. of a fowl 
which the owner is missing. 

k5 [J] to aim (in shooting); ok5 w 
uzo ni [,,*'/] he is aiming at 
that antelope (uzo [\]). 

koyokoyo [ ] reproduces the 
sound made by the bell aza [ ' . ] ; 
v. goyogoyo ["""], gexeygsysy 

kalo [/] to pick fruit from a 
tree; with hands or a pointed 
stick, ads [ " ] ; kol-ogwi ms [ / " * ] 
pick me mangoes ! gi-ayakol-otie 
LJ J ! ' ] let us go and pick otie ! 

ku i ['] to depreciate in value, or, 
become worthless through being 
kept in stock for too long a time ; 
inya n-ids xo-xuou (x£ w uxut5u) 
iyimu s s-eki (se [']), okeku 

l;v.:--\.y] " the y ams 

which I bought in wait for a 
famine, when I had carried them 
to the market, they were worth- 
less"; iterat. kulo [/] not to be 
in order (but reparable); osisi 
na kulo [' " m t "\] this gun is out 
of order; cf oku [."%]; v. ru ["], 
rhia [ ' ] (to be entirely spoilt) . 
ku 2 ['] in ku w obo [./] yi [*] 
to hurry a matter, a task; 
iku w obo y-ezo ni [..."' J] I am 
hurrying that lawsuit; e.g. by 
getting hold of all the evidence 
beforehand; iku w obo y-o ne, 

t-iyami-oto-te [/'•.. "I 
have hurried it, I will see its 
ground"; i.e. I will see its con- 

ku ['] gbe [*] (i) second part of a 
verbal combination meaning 
"to mix together", v. mu ['], 
fug ['], ku gbe ["•]. (2) an aux- 

iliary verb indicating that the 
action expressed by the main 
verb is done by several people 
together; if a ku gbe t u w £e 
[\ \] they are doing it to- 

ku 1 [ * ] to construct something by 
means of ropes and strings, such 
as an akpata [* "], sgio ["], and 
a drum, but also the masquerad- 
ing dress for Ekpo [ # . ] which is 
made out of strings and palm 
branches; okuJLkpata [. ] he 
built (or, is building) an akpata 
harp; cf. ku [/]. 
ku 2 [ * ] to make a feast (azo [ # *\]). 
ku [J*] (1) to play. (2) to dance 
a slow dance; but v. gbe ['] 
when linked with the name of 
a dance, and v. d-ugba ['J. 
(3) to play; in a sexual sense; 
also used as a more decent ex- 
pression for ho [J] "to have 
sexual intercourse"; "with" is 
expressed by the preceding verb 
gu [■]. ku w iku w exae [..*'.] "to 
play game of sand" : (a) to play 
with sand; (b) to have sexual 
relations with a girl not yet at 
the age of puberty ; cf. iku [ # J . 
ku 1 [J] to parcel; ku ihs ni n- 
umu yade [..''-. 'J] "parcel 
that load (so) that you may take 
it come" (i.e. bring it along), 
ku [J] n-sree to parcel for 
erse: pregnant women give an 
offering to erse [ # %] in order 
to ensure safe delivery, but 
also by other people when ad- 
vised to do so (by Ogwsga [ ^ J) ; 
to this end they weave a thread- 
net over a calabash and put the 
calabash on a forked stick on an 
ada [_], i.e. a cross-road. 
ku w egbe [ /] mu ['] "to parcel 
body (i.e. oneself) take": to 



stand contrite, with downcast 
eyes and folded arms, as a 
wrongdoer when being blamed 
for his offences; cf. iku [ # J, 
ikuegbemu [...J; v. ha [J] (to 
parcel with leaves) . 

2 [/] in ku [J] EXU [..] to 

wound; to make infirm; oku 
o-exu [/*J he wounded me 
(possibly ku [ J ] ) . Idiom : ku w 
erha ku w iri [..'./] lit. "hitting 
tree hitting creeper", i.e. meet- 
ing obstacles everywhere; used 
e.g. of a man who is drunken 
and, therefore, hits every ob- 
stacle on his way; v. yi ["] ama 
['.]- de[*]ku U\ 

kua ['] second part of verbal 
combinations implying that the 
object (always a mass, such as a 
liquid, or grains) is thrown or 
poured away; v. fua ['], mu ['], 
hihis [/]. 

kua [J] '(i) to bite (of a snake); 
cf. ukuaoe [."Y]. (2) to injure 

kue ['] in kue ["] y-o [\] to 
agree to (it); ikue I agree; 
okue y-ooe-re [ ' * ] "he agreed 
to me it" (lit. "to my it"?): he 
granted it to me. 

kue [*] to trade on credit (used 
as second part of verbal com- 
binations); oxi-oe kue [/'•] he 
sold it on credit ; od-oe kue [ m > . ] 
he bought it on credit; cf. 
odekue [ '], oxiekue [ '], xis 

ku w eti[./];c/. koi [/]. 

k-ugbak-eye [\\] at any time; 
always; same as ugbugbehia 
[/••]; v. Akugbe; cf. igba ['J, 

sye [..]• 

i[J] to splash water on some- 
thing or somebody; it is also 
used as second part of verbal 

combinations such as kpolo [/] 
kui [/] "to sweep (and throw 
the rubbish) on"; booe [/] kui 
[J] "to shake dust or chaff, or, 
to winnow on": i.e. it implies 
that the object of the main 
action is thrown on or at some- 
body or something; the vowel d 
appears before the objective 
pronouns of the sing. ; yebooo^e 

ku-ooe ['.*... ~\] don't shake it 
(i.e. dust, or chaff in winnowing) 
on me! ogiayae ku-erha ku-iri 
[..' J ..'..'] he cut, or tore, it all 
to pieces, i.e. throwing the pieces 
everywhere (v. ku 2 [J]). 

kukuku [ ## J closed (of leaves); 
used with the verb ye [ ' ] . 

kuo [J] (1) to collapse; to faint. 
(2) to fold (e.g. an umbrella); 

kuo_exarha ni [ /J] fold that 

umbrella ! cf. ko [']. 

kurururururu [ ] describes 

the noise of distant thunder 
(before a rainfall); v. kpafa- 
rararara [ ]. 

kupD [ # J dull; of a day when the 
sun is behind clouds all the 
time ; ede n-ere ye kuroo [.,%/•.] 
it is dull to-day. 

k-uxu6u ['..]; cf. ke 1 [']. 

kwarayada [ ] entirely worn out ; 
used with kwise [*J. 

kwe ['] an auxiliary verb in- 
dicating doubt in a question, 
possibility in other sentences; 
can often be translated by ' ' pro- 
bably", "really" or "at all"; 
iyakweru w ee ra n-iyeru-ee (yi[']) 

[.' "\ ' " "] sha11 1 do if or not? 
oen-umanaxwenie y-o na, uya~ 

kweyo ['"',' J ,.'''] as you do 
not reply to it now, will you 
really go (or, will you go at all) ? 
oyakwere [ / * * ] he will probably 



kweikwei ["] (also kwekwe) (i) 
small; of yams, always in a 
plural sense ; used with the verb 
ye [*]. (2) describes the walk of 
a very short man ; used with the 

verb xia [']. 
kwise [*.] in okwise kwarayada 

[ * •* *•'] he is entirely worn out. 
kwo [/] (also kwe) to feather an 

arrow, in: kwo w ifet3e [.'..]. 
kyekere ["*] to be very small ; c/. 

Yor. kekere ['•"]• 

kpa 1 [ ' ] an auxiliary verb, used 
in (hypothetical) conditional 
sentences; ikpami-oe, iyale ne 

[/"\V " had 1 ( alwa Y s ) 
been seeing him, I should have 

run away from him" (e.g. from 

a creditor who comes to ask for 

his money); ikpami-oe, iyale ne 

[*V."M " na( * 1 seen kmi 
(once),' I should have run"; cf 
akpaws [/>]; okpare, oyami-eo- 
O ho [ * " * [,,/] case ne would 
have come, he would have re- 
ceived what he wants" (viz. a 
thrashing) . 

kpa 2 f] in kpa [.] odi [**] to 
surprise ; em n-uru na kpa t3-odi 
[...'.."] what (the thing) you 
are doing now surprises me. 

kpa 3 ['] (1) to vomit; cf ekpa 
[ ']. (2) to burst into fruit (of 
bananas and plantain trees) . 

kpa [*] ma [J] (1) to be good (in 
the sense of " convenient") ; 
used impersonally; okpa ma-y- 
irherhe re [.'/..''] it is good 
that I have come in time; 

ryaiy idooa rus [ ' f ' . J ] 1 should 
not have managed (lit. "come") 
to meet you. (2) to be clear, plain ; 
okpa ma yi-y-ona yif-okieke o-use 

n-imamu(re [']) [.V* ] 

"it is quite clear that (iye [*.]) 

this is the last among the 
helping parties (use [/]) which 
we are having (rau ['])" (this 
may be used as an exasperated 
comment of one who thinks that 
he is exploited by the man for 
whom the helpers are working) . 
kpa [J] (1) to lift up; kpa-re ye 
dey-uyas-etl muj [JJ\\*'\] 
lift it up and look whether you 
will be able to carry it! kpa 
[J] mu ["] dia ['] to put some- 
thing in an upright position, 
e.g. a log, in order to test its 
length, kpa egbe [_'] "to lift 
body": to leave, depart; okpa w 
egbe ne o-en-eoo [."'.. .] he has 
already left the town; v. kpao 
[J], kpa w obo [/] to raise 
one's hand; same as to^obo [_'] 
mu [']; okpa obo n-ofi o-eoi, 

ec-inak [."••„VV] "he 
raised (his) hand in order to 
strike me (a thing), then (lit. 
'it was') I ran away". (2) to 
help somebody carry a load; 
ikpa-re o-ode n-ima nay-enyae 

[.J \J '*.] "I helped him on 
the way by which we went to 
Enyae"; cf. kpao [J], 

kpaa [J describes report of a 
European double-barrel or rifle. 

kpae [J] (1) to pull out, e.g. the 
blade of an axe from the handle. 
(2) to tear, break off branches or 
leaves, or fruit that is picked 
from the stem of a plant, e.g. 
cocoa ; kpa-ebe ni me [..*'•] tear 
these leaves off for me ! iterat. 
kpano [/]. (3) to fall out; to 
break off (in trans.); v. kolo [/] 
(to pick a fruit from the 
branches), bia [J], xuo [/]. 

kpakakpakakpaka [".."] gra- 
velly (of soil) ; so as to hurt one's 
feet; otoe na ye kpakakpaka- 


kpaka [.J.'".."] this soil is 
kpako [. J (i) denoting big size of 
tooth or (reduplicated) teeth; 
oye kpako it (the tooth) is 
big. (2) also used of young 
bursting plants to denote their 
being short and thick, ca. 2 or 
3 days after they have come 
out of the ground; pi. by re- 
duplication ; ozore kpako [../...] 
it has sprouted and is a big 

kpab [/] to peel (eatable things) ; 

kpal-igati na [.*.*.] P ee l this 
cassava ! 

kpanokpano [.,..] rough ; erha na 

ye kpanokpano [// ] this 

plank ("wood") is rough; erha 

ne kpanokpano [ # / ] a rough 

plank (same as erha n-omaris 


kpa(o) [J] (1) to get up; okpa(o) 
o-aga [ # "\ " ] he got up from the 
chair, kpao [J] mu [*] dia [*] 
to get up (and stand). (2) to 
leave, depart (used with follow- 
ing o-) ; okpao o-en-suo [."%„%.] 
he left the town (or, country). 
kpa(o) [J] re [*] to get out; 
kpa-oa re [/*] get out there! 
cf kpa [J], 

kparatatatara [ ] describes 

the noise of thunder. 

kpataki main, principal; cf. 

Yor. kpataki [...]. 

kpatakpata [...J describes the 
patter of heavy rain; orho kp. 

[J....1 or 3de k P- [/....] ft is 
raining heavily. 

kpatals [ / J an expression used by 
the tortoise in a story ; same as 
ns ['] to defaecate. 

kpe [*] (1) to wash (things), also 
parts of the body (but "to wash 
oneself" is xue [J]). (2) with 

personal objects: to wash with 
charms, in order to transfer their 
strength to the person washed. 
It can also be used for "wash- 
ing hunters' dogs with charms, 1 ' 
but " to wash things with charms 
is rhua [J], (3) to cure by 
washing (a wound) ; cf. ukp-ako 


kpe [ ] fu [ ] to die out; sdo ni 
hsko kpe fu [J J J"] that 
town is gradually dying out. 

kpe 1 [J] to play an instru- 
ment, kp-akpata [/" ] to play 
the akpata [ * " ] harp, or, a 
European guitar, kp-ema [J ,] 
to play a drum, kp-obo [/] to 
clap hands; to applaude. kp- 
orhu [/] to blow a horn or 
akohe '[..^]; cf. orhu [/]. 
kp-orhu [J,] (a) to shout in 
falsetto voice, ii, or, uu, in order 
to call one another at a distance, 
as done by hunters, trappers, or 
farmers when they have lost 
their way ; (b) to shout words at 
a great distance, as e.g. done by 
public criers; (c) to preach; cf. 
urhu [_]. kp-oxa [/] to call 
antelopes, birds, or squirrels, 
with the help of leaves, or 
through the nose, as hunters do. 
kp-oxa [J,] to play the oxa [ t # ] 
drum; cf kpei [J]. 

kpe 2 [J] to blame, reproach in 
public; ysyikpe Ce don't 
reproach me in public! cf 
kpei [J], kpe 1 [/]. 

k P e [J] X e [J] to flock round 

k P e i [J] to shout; okpei t-ifa 

(tie [/]) [./*.] he is shouting 

for them; cf kpe 1 and 2 
(e)kpekukpeku [ ] a kind of 

seed, used as rat poison, 
kp-ema [J t ]; cf kpe 1 [/]. 


k P g [ ] ( J ) to dig y ams an( i cut 

their " heads " off which are used 
as seed-yam ; the yams are then 
put back into the ground until 
the eru [/] is built; also kp- 
ema, km-ema ['J and kp-inya, 
km-inya [/]. Of these, the 
former seems to be the more 
correct expression while the 
latter is used by the younger 
generation; cf. ikpema [...]. 
(2) to cut oneself (or somebody 
else) in shaving, 
kpee [J] to last, to be a long 
time ago; idiom.: o-omakps-eva 
['*• ■] "when it has not lasted 
two": after a short time, kpse 
[J] fua ['] to pass away (time), 
kps-eri [/J to be under size; of 
persons and animals only. 
kpsy££ [ # J describes a high degree 
of smoothness; oye [/], or, 
oriee kpsyss [,"Y.] it is very 
smooth (not slippery) ; erha ne 
kpsyss [ * ], same as erha n- 
ari-ore (riV [/]) [.//.] a 
smoothed plank, 
kpetesi [ # \] upper storey (or, 
house with two storeys?); cf 
Yor. kpetssi [ ' ]; v. egedege 

kpii [.] describes a unanimous 
shout of applause ; used with the 
verb we [J], 

kp-inya [/]; cf. kpg [*]. 

kp-ita ["] to quote a proverb; 

c/. ita ["J; v. fi [*]• 

kpo [J] fua ['] to slip away; e.g. 
of poles tied together at the top 
(used in roofing a house) which 
become undone while the lower 
ends are being fixed; erha na 
kpo fua [.'.J J] these poles have 
slipped out. 
kp-obo [/]; cf. kpe 1 [J], 
kp-oyo [/] (1) to rinse a vessel; 

cf. s-oyo [/]. (2) to bake (only 
applied to akasa [..']); 
kpolo [/] to sweep; idiom.: kpol- 

£ ^ u [. *] " to sweep the sweep- 
ings*': to do the last part of 
some work ; to conclude a thing ; 
v. xwi^sr-ohiui [./..]. 

kpoo 1 [J describes a bright, but 
not naming, fire; onya kpoo [\] 
it burns brightly; with ba [j]: 
aru w £re ba kpoo [..'../.] "his 
eye is very red": (a) his eye is 
very much inflamed; (b) he is 
very angry. 

kpoo 2 [ J describes report of a 
native gun, which was not well 

kp-orhu [/], [7.]; cf. kpe 1 [/]. 
kp-oxa [/], [J m ]; cf. kpe 1 [J]. 
kpo ["] to be numerous, plentiful; 

skpo [J~\] they are not many; 

cf. Yor. kpo [J. 
kpokpookpo [•••] quite silent ; used 

with the verb ml ['] nwa [*]; 

ohu nwa kpokpookpo [/••••] he 

was quite silent, 
kpolo [/] to be big; n-ufia ne 

kpolo gbe [ * ' \ * ] what you have 

cut for him is too big. Idiom. : 

okpoloe o-urhu [...'.] "it is big 

on his neck": he is in great 


kpofokpofo [ v# J protruding; oye 

kpofokp. [/ ] it is protruding 

(an eye-ball); oru w ikparo kp. 

] he na s protruding 


kp-ot£ [ " ] to prepare ots ["]. 

kpu [ t ] (short u) describes the fall 
of something round and heavy; 
ode kpu [ ,\. ] it fell, e.g. of a 
coco-nut, mango-fruit, orange, 
iz£ [\] or the like. 

kpuku(ru), also kpskuru [_J 
short; okpia na ye kpuku 
[.//..] this man is short, 


kpukpuukpu [...] cowering, e.g. 
in: oki re kp. [./'...] he 
cowered (in cold weather, with 
arms crossed and hands on one's 
shoulders) ; also used with si [ ' ] 
kue [J], 

la i ['] to pass; to go by a cer- 
tain way. Combinations with 
verbs : la [ ' ] dia ["%] to come out 
of something; ola di-uw-owa 
[//"•] he came out of the house, 
la [ * ] fi [ ' ] to pass through into ; 
ol-iyek-owa w fi ugbo [.'*.'."] he 
passed behind the house into the 
farm, la ["] re ['] is used in the 
imperative la re [ / ] come ! (the 
simple re is not used), la w e re 
[*/] would mean "pass it (e.g. 
a fence) and come!" Combina- 
tions with nouns : la [ ' ] ar, o [ . J 
"to enter (somebody's) eye" 
to please; eoi n-odee la-t-aro 
[ ' "\ ' • ] the thing he has bought 
pleases him; v. ys [J], sko [/\]. 
la w (e)ho [/] "to pass ear": to 
listen. Perhaps la ['] aro [.J 
and la w (e)ho [/] belong to the 
item lao [']. Idiom.: 1-oke 
1-ugboyodo [.'*...] "to pass hill 
pass valley": to go far and 
wide; usi^sre 1-oke 1-ugboyodo 
[.. . '*...] his fame has spread 
fair and wide. 1-ore ["] to walk 
about the town; ol-ore gbe 
[/"] he is loitering about, 
i-urho ['J re ['] "to pass the 
gate come" : to be reincarnated, 
in ol-urh-om w ere re [.'*.'.'] he 
was reincarnated in his son; cf. 
loya [/.](?), lao [•]. 

la 2 [ ' ] to sound ; of an instrument, 
such as a drum, bell, harp, or 
guitar; ema na la gbe [,//'] 
this drum sounds much. 

la 3 ['] a formula used in a 

greeting given by junior mem- 
bers of a clan to their seniors 
when meeting them for the first 
time in the morning. They kneel 
in front of their seniors when 
greeting them. The syllable la is 
usually followed by the name of 
the clan and an o, e.g. la-oi w eze o 
['••••] is used in the ioi w eze [/'J 

la [J] to carry repeatedly, several 
times; v. he [J], vio [}]. 

lagbalayoti [*.'.'] in no time; very 
quickly; an idiom: lagbalayoti 

Adezi gbe ne [7.'...'*] "in no 
time Adezi (a Bini warrior) 
killed (or 'struck'?)": it hap- 
pened very quickly (said of 
anything) ; cf. la i ['](?). 
laya [/] to wave, to spread (of the 
branches of a tree)! v. uwows 


lab [/] to lick; cf. elalo [ 
lao ['] to enter; la w owa [./] to 
enter a house; ola-p [,'\] he 
entered it (but: ogbera la w owa 
[ . # / ] he passed into the house) . 
lajukpo [".] loois to go to 
bed; irala_ukpo loois [.'".. J] 
I am going to bed. 
le ['] (i) to cook; ol-se [.V] he 

cooked it; rhie-re n-al-se [.'*>] 
bring it in order that we may 
cook it ! inya n-ale [ t ' %] cooked 
yam. (2) to charm (by cooking 
with medicine for some days); 
ol-oroka na [."/.] he charmed 
this ring; (better rhua [J]). 
le [J] in le [J] nya [J] to treat 
with contempt by waving one's 
hand over a man, gesticulate 
over him; ole nya Se [./.'] he 
is treating me with contempt; 
also: 1-eye [/] nya [J]; y el-eye 
nya t3e ['...^v] don't belittle me 
(by gestures) ! (also ye [%]). 



1-exue [/J "to pass by (some- 
body's) shame": to overlook an 
offence, for reason of the offend- 
er's youth, poverty, relationship, 
etc. ; il-exu-ere [,J m \] I overlook- 
ed his offence. 

leilei ['•] v. teitei [••]. 

lele [ *] (i) to follow; lel-ee kpao 
[."V] follow him! (2) (follow- 
ing another verb): along; gwa 
lel-Ezs na yari-ototo [ ... ^/ . ] 
pull along this river until (lit. " to 
go") its mouth (lit. "bottom"). 
(3) in an abstract sense : follow- 
ing in consequence of, e.g. lel- 
ude [ / J "following the advice " : 
in consequence of the advice; 
occurs in a proverb only (while 
"taking the advice" would be 
y-ude yi [J']). 

le [ . ] same as ne [J it ; occurs in 
le vo [ m J] oris 00 yi where 
is it? 

le [J] (1) to run. (2) to flow: eze 

18 tne river, brook is 

flowing. (3) to lose colour, of 
some sorts of cloth, in washing ; 
ukpo n-orhuae na Is gbe [,'\J'] 
the cloth he wears now has lost 
its colour to a great extent (le 
['] is heard also). (4) to make 
run(?), in l-ofia [ # \] "to make a 
man run": to keep the public 
at a distance, e.g. the bull- 
roaring performed at secret 
societies; cf. ubua [/J. Com- 
binations with verbs: Is [J] 
fe [*] to escape, run away; Die fe 
oe xia [,J he is escaping me 
(along) ; da-e y-ese n-oyele f-ima 

[".."". J n °ld him well in order 
that he may not escape us! 
1 £ [J] S a [J] to move around; 
ogwa le ga w erha na [.V.. J he 
is digging (yams) around this 
tree; oh-ikeke le ga Ce [.J 

he rode on his bicycle around 

leleele [ * * * ] swollen and big (as of 
a corpse); oye leleele [,"••*] it is 
big and swollen ; cf. leleele [...]. 

leleele [_ J big, broad (as e.g. of 
a filled yam-stack, eru [/]), or, 
heavily; oye leleele [.'...] it is 
broad; eru ere si leleele [..*/...] 
his yam-stack hangs (lit. "pulls") 
heavily; cf. leleele [*"]. 

le [./] to hide; ole re [,\/] he 
is hidden; irhi-ere le fe [..'*../] 
I have hidden it (lit. "taken it 
hidden"); cfAz [/], re 

leu [J describes the fall of a heavy 
object having corners or a flat 
side, such as e.g. an uxwerhe 
[/'] or an uhuu-edi [.*.']; ode 
leu [/Y] it fell (in the way 
described above) ; also meu [ J . 

likiba ['/] some kinds of trees 
{Pausinystalia talbotii; P. go- 
himba; P. brachythyrus ; P. ma- 
croeeras, and Coryantha pachy- 
ceras) ; wood used for planks in 
house building. 

likpalikpa [_ J (also likpilikpi) 
rough, pimply (of the body); 
uru egbe likpalikpa [/'• ] 
"you make body pimply": you 
have pimples, e.g. after eating 
too much sugar-cane; v. also 
ikp-oxoe [/J. 

lo [*] trie [J] to lie down (to 
sleep) ; olouie he lay down 

to sleep; cf. uie [J], 

lo[J] to waste (money, time, etc.); 
iyo n-ilo y-oxuo na w uhuuu kpolo 

g b * V.'JJ.:.:-] "the money 
I spent on this woman (head) is 
very much ('big') ". Said e.g. of 
the "dowry", or when having 
settled her debts ; cf. Yor. lo [J. 
loya [J t ] to travel around, said 
of an Oba or ruler only who walks 


round his 8guae, or travels 
around his country in order to 
inspect it; oloya gbe o-sys ni 

ne travelled around 
a good deal at that time; of. 
la i ["](?). 

l-°t e [ ] ; c/. la i [ ] . 

b [*] (i) to grind; to sharpen 
(knife); 1-oka ['J to grind corn. 

k LJ] ( J ) to iron, press a cloth, or, 
clothes ; b w (u)kpo ni-ssse [ j) ' • ] 
press thaf cloth well ! (the low 
tone of the u is not indicated 
above); ob-re [.''] he ironed it. 
(2) to step sidewards in dancing, 
e.g. inugba[* ], akaba [. . J, and 

ohoyo [...]; □ (?) 

bgiobgb describes a sway- 

ing kind of walk; almost the 
same as gobgob [....], but con- 
veying the idea of the walk 
being more pleasant. Used with 
the verb xia [ ' ] . 

byo [/] (1) to pain; to ache; to 
cause suffering; ob^o t$s [..'*] 
it made me suffer (a disease); 
obx-oe [ mm \\ it pains him. 
(2) to be difficult ; otoyo ms (or 
ue) [.. '] it is difficult for me 
(with an object of the third 
person, however, olo-y-oe is 
used; obyo ns [,.'\] is not 
used) . 

1-Dt5a [ # \] ; cf. le [J] (?). 

lubasete ['/"] anklets worn by a 
prince (okorp [ "]); v. Idzo Idzo 
Wzo [...]. 

lue [J] to chew ; lu-ste n-osu w 8SES8 
[.7..Y] chew it (so) that it is 
well ground ! 1-unu [ / ] lit. " to 
chew mouth"; yaye o-oyal-unu 

U..\l "(go and ) look h °whe 

luelue [ / ] to wither ; ebe na lueluee 

[."..Si this herb is withered, 
luelue [J J] describes the move- 

ment made by the bird ahiau- 
osa [**>.] which "nods" with 
the upper part of its body ; and 
the coitus movement. 
1-uyaE [ " J to be different ; oy-uoE 
na 1-uyas gbe [7.7] "this my 
own is very different": I am 
always treated in a different 
way. l-uya£ [\] hi [\] to 
differ from something; of. uyas 


1-uyu [ u ] to stir up ; to mix (same 
as t-uyu [/]); ol-uyu u-gko [ 7 ."%] 
"he stirred up my stomach": 
he caused me pains in the 
stomach, or abdomen, viz. by a 

luluulu [ * * ' ] fat and strong, of a 
cow or ass, but also of very fat 
people; v. uueoueoue [ t# J (fat 
and lazy) ; oye luluulu ['"•]. 

1-unu [;];cf. lue 

l-urho[\]re[-];c/. lai [*]. 

ma 1 ['] an auxiliary (1) ex- 
pressing that something has 
been done before, used with yi [ ' ] 
(same as ka ['], v. also te [*]); 

omaru w en-uxuou yi [."V,",/] ne 
has made the medicine before; 
arowa^a w-ir£ (we [J]) mata 
ma w a yi n-udogu ve nwina 

L7\ .7] y°^r master 
said he had told you before to 
come and work with me ; oma- 

nwina yi [. V'] he has worked 
before. Apparently this auxiliary 
is always in the perfect. (2) used 
in the negative perfect of any 
verb, with a high-tone pronoun, 
e.g. omaru w Ee ['**"%] he has not 
done it (v. omaru w £e yi [/ # V] 
"he has done it before",' and 
omaru w £e [/*"%] "he pretends 
doing it", v. ma 2 [']). In 
combination with following he 


[ ' ] , this ma [ ' ] is used to express 
that the action has not yet been 
done; omaheru w ee [ he 
has not yet done it. 
ma 2 ['] to simulate; to pretend 
to do something; the verb is 
apparently used in the imperfect 
only and may be identical with 
ma i; omanwina [//] he pre- 
tends to work (but v. omanwina 
[ * ] under ma i) ; omaru v-ova. 
n-oxuoCi [ / * • . . /] "he is acting 
like a sick man": he simulates 
illness; omaru v-ova. n-o£-oto-re 

acting like a man who knows 
the bottom of it": he pretends 
to know much about it. m-e^i 

[."] S£ [ ] to Si ye a ^ se state- 
ment; to be a false witness. The 
first part of this verbal group was 
stated to be ma [ ' ] ' ' to pretend ' 1 ; 
cf. imawu [...]; imaru [...]. 
ma 3 [ ' ] to fit ; to suit ; clothes, or 
a dance; ukpo n-ozo rhuae-rs 
ma w £ [...'\V] the cloth which 
Ojo has put on to-day suits him 
(the i is not nasalised); iku 
n-uku ma w a [...J* J] "the 
dance you are dancing suits 
you", ma ['] gue [J] to grow 
around; e.g. a white ant hill 
grown around some object, or 
a prey entirely covered by 
soldier-ants; oxia ma gu-sre 
[ ' 1 the soldier-ants have 

L • • • • -J 

covered it. (The gu- is low here.) 
ma 4 ['] (i) to make pots, or 
bricks ; iterat . : mano [ . * ] to make 
many pots or bricks. (2) to bake 
"rice" (izs ['J) cakes, in: 
m-izs [*J; cf. omaxe [...], 

omizs [...]. 
ma [ ] short form of the personal 
pronoun, 1st pers. pi.; used in 
front of the verb; cf. ima ['J. 

ma 1 [J] to show; ma [J] ebe 
[/] to teach; oma o-ebe [../] 
he is teaching me (book); cf. 

omaoaeui [ ]; v. ta [*]ma [J], 

xa ['] ma [J]> ya ['] ma [J], 
rhie [J], mu 1 [']. 

ma2[J] to be good; oma all 
right; oma n-iz-ofobo 
it is better (lit. good) that I 
should leave it (instead of ma, 
okere [./.] may be used). 
Names: ox-u(3e ma oe [ '/ . ] "my 
own is good for me" (given 
when a child is not very nice, 
but the mother is content with 
it) ; agbo [ , J (may be omitted) 
n-iye ma J] " where I am is 
good": I am content with my 
lot (a woman's name) . 

ma 3 [J] to conquer, knock down 
in a wrestling match, general 
fighting, etc., but also in a law- 
suit; v. osuru [_]. 

mama [/] (1) to stick together; 
ebe n-igbe y-eose na mama 
kugbe [.;*./.;.'] the leaves 
with which I covered this kola 
(gbe, to pick) are sticking to- 
gether. (2) to press; to massage; 
fi w ukpo y-am-erhe na n-uya 
mamao-egbe ["..V.'....*] "dip 
a cloth into this hot water so 
that you may take it (and) press 
(i.e. massage) my body"; cf. 
muma [/]; v. rilo [/], si ['] 

mama [ . ] . 

meye [/] to commit suicide; 
oterameye [.".*] he was about 
to commit suicide; v. zz 1 ["]. 

m-eto [/]; cf. mo 1 [']. 

m£[*] contracted form of the verb 
na 1 ['] "to give" with pro- 
nominal object of the 1st pers. 
sgl. us [']; cf. na 1 [']. 

ms [*] da [J] to make a click 
(with long suction) as a sign of 


contempt for somebody; yeme 
da oe ['.."%] "don't make clicks 
at me!" (also ye [\\; da is 
rather long) . Clicks are also used 
as an expression of grief, hence 
cf. oms [..]. 

m-eti [/]; cf. mu i [*]. 

meu [J; v. lsu [J. 

mi [*] to press; to squeeze; 
mi^ukpS [" .] to wring clothes. 

miaoe [/] to be difficult; inwina 
na miai5s \5e gbe [.../..V] this 
work is very difficult for me. 

mie ['] (i) to see. (2) to have, 
mie ['] mu ['] to find, mis ['] 
ze [ ' ] to pay the membership fee 
of a society, i.e. in money, or, 
in the case of the Ekpo [ ] 
society (and others?), in yam. 
(If everyone has brought a yam, 
a woman is chosen to prepare 
fufu, and a feast is held.) urn- 
inya n-ani nwue ze yi J J'] 
have you got the yam which is 
your share (" allotted for you to 
pay", v. ni 3 [']) to pay? e, imie 

ze ['.*.] " ves > I nave got (it) to 
pay", i.e. I have it here and can 
pay it. mi-aro [" J to pro- 
phesy, mi-egbe [_'] to meet; 
mami-egbe n-ods we 
met yesterday, v. ua [J], mi- 
ehe [ . / ] to get a chance (used in 
the perf .) ; omi-ehe nale [."',/] 
he had a chance to escape ; also 
mi-eke [.."]. mi-uhuou [ t * J to 
be saved (from: o-obo [/]); cf. 
mie [J]. 
mie [J* ] to obtain something from 
somebody; mie [J] fa ['] to 
acquit; to redeem; omi-5fe fa 
[."*•] he redeemed him. mi- 
arale [,'J.] to meddle; to 
interfere (v. tafia [."%]); omi- 
arale y-oC-eCe [..V..*.] he al- 
ways interferes in my affairs. 

mi-eyo [../] gijhe [.A] to 
give food to a god (rhie [J] is 
also used). mi-5o-at5e [.."%.] 
"to see somebody's wife": to 
commit adultery; v. mie [']. 

miemie [/] (1) to be sweet (like 
sugar) ; cf. miemiemie [...]; (2) 
to suck (sweets, e.g. toffee). 

miemiemie [ ] sweet ; used with 
the verb ye [']. 

m-igbo [J J] to echo; om-igbo xia 
[.J J ] it is echoing along. 

mina [/] to dream; ot-imina n- 

ominae ma Ce [.'*.'."%. ] ne told 
me the dream he had dreamt; 
cf. mie [•](?); imtna 

mioyo [ '] to be slippery; omioyoe 
o-ima la enwa [..%.„/ *."\] it was 
slippery when we passed (at 
that time); omioyo oe [_'*] "it 
slipped me" (viz. the ground): 
I skidded; omioyo o-obo oe 
[.."..'] it slipped out of my 
hand ; cf. mioyo5 [ J. 

mioyoo [ # J smooth and slippery ; 
like e.g. varnished wood; used 
with the verb ye [']; cf. mioyo 
[ / ] , alimioyo ['/']; v . kpeyee [.J. 

mitaa [ ] describes a very lazy 
way of walking; used with the 
verb xia ['] ; cf. mitamita [ ]. 

mitamita [ ] too small for one's 
age; poor-looking (in the meta- 
phorical sense); used with the 
verb ye [*] ; cf. mitaa. [.J. 

m-ize [' ] ; cf. ma 4 [']. 

mm no. 

mmm [ ] (with a preceding glottal 
stop; very low tone) describes 
the cry of a big monkey (name?) ; 
used with the verb tu [ ' ] . 

m-obo [ '], m-oha [ *], m-ohiorp 
[*'.], m-ohu [\], m-ose [/], 
m-oto ['.]; cf mu 1 [*]. 

mosee [ # J nice, beautiful; used 
with the verb ye [ ' ] ; owa na ye 


mosee [.'.*,.] this house is very 
nice, mosemose [ ] is also 

U • • • • mi 

used, A. would accept mosemose 
only; cf mu i [']. 
mo i ['] in m-eto [.'] to plait one's 
hair ; om-eto [ * ' ] she plaited her 
hair; cf ometo [..J. 

mo 2 [ ' ] to bear fruit, of plants. 

momo [/] (i) to lend; orh-iyo na 
momo [ t J 'J , # ] he lends money ; 
omomo (5-ixo [./'*] he lent me 
money. (2) to borrow; imom- 
ukpo o-obo-re [..'../J I bor- 
rowed a cloth from him, n-irhie 

yari-uye ["/..'] " to take (it) to 
go to a dance"; v. iyo ["]. 

m-oto [*.]; cf. mu 1 ['], 

mu 1 ['] (1) to take up; to carry; 
v. to ['] mu [*]; omu ins 
he is carrying a load; imu w s o- 
oho [.'..'] I carried it in my 
hand; imu w s 0000 [.V. ] I 
lifted him on my back (of babies ; 
iy-i7eke muj [.\."\] I carried 
him on my back, of somebody 
who is ill, or e.g. when fording a 
river); imu w s y-uhuou [.*'.*.] 
I carried it on my head. (2) to 
snatch; to catch; imu w e u-ero 
[•'..*] I caught you in your trick 
(" caught him": mu w s ['.]); 
imu w st-igbina [.'..] I snatched 
(drew) him away from the fight 
(the t is not nasalised) ; cf. Yor. 
mu [ ]• (3) to have an attack 
of; the name of the disease as 
subject; v. owa ["], oki ['J. 
(4) to be possessed of a certain 
turn of mind ; the emotion being 
the subject; v. exue [ #> ], oha 
[/], egbe [/]; but also v. 
mu oha [ ']. mu combined 
with verbs: mu ['] de [J] to 
bring something to somebody 
(v. mu ['] re [*]); omu w s de 
[..//] ne * s bringing it him. 

mu ['] dede [/] to embrace; 
omu t5s dede [.//] he is em- 
bracing me. mu [*] fua ['] to 
throw away (but for liquids 
and grains v. mu ['] kua 
[']); mu sdi_ebo ni fua-y-sma 
[.."'- J J J.] throw that pine- 
apple away; it is not good! 
mu ['] gbe [J] yi ['] to put 
something across something 
else; omu w s gbee y-o he 
put it across it. mu ['] he 
[J] to begin; to start; mu w inj 
wina ni hsjtere [ # , t J J J'.] 
start that work before I come ! 
mu [*] hi [\\ to take off, 
away; mu eftif-ebo ni hi eua re 

[./V..Y] " take that P late 
(or, those plates) away from 

there!" (the iterat. form muno 

[/] would not imply the plural 

"plates", but taking them away 

one by one), mu [*] ke [J] to 

put a pot on the fire, mu ['] 

kua [*] to throw, pour away 

(liquids and grains) ; ameni tuyu, 

muj kua [.J'.X.J] that 
water is not clean (lit. "dis- 
turbed"), throw it away! mu 
[*] kpao [J] to take away, 
mu ['] ma [J] to show; imu_s 

ma-fe [.""-/.] I showed it to 
him (v. the next) . mu [ ' ] na [ * ] 
to give; imu^e ns [/*>] I 
gave it him; imu w s nws ye 

[.'//.] "i & ave it y° u to 

at": I showed it to you. 
Idiom: omu w eoi ns ie ,~\ 
lit. "he gave him something to 
eat": he poisoned him; v. fua 
[J] (but: orhi-eua^e ns Y\] 
he gave him something to eat) ; 
mu [*] nya [J] (a) to carry 
on (i.e. the head); imu^s 
nya uhuou [.'*./.] = imu w s y- 
uhuou [. '/.]; (b) to put the 


blame on somebody ; omu^en-soe 
nya os "he P ut the 

matter (i.e. the blame for the 
matter) on me", mu ['] re ['] 
to bring (v. mu ['] de [/]) for 
the use of re 2 ['] and de [J] v. 
the corresponding headings) . 
mu [*] ro [J] "to take to 
think": to mind; to worry; 
ysmuj ro ['*../.] don't mind, 

don't worry ( = ysze y-o [\"\]). 
mu [ * ] ru [ ' ] to cheat ; omu w £ ru 
gbe [ 'J,'] he cheated him much, 
mu ['] xua^efe [J\] to carry 
something on one's hip, support- 
ing the load with one hand, mu 
['] xus [J] na [*] to give (a 
marriageable girl) in marriage 
without previous ugaoe [.~\] 
or " dowry", mu ["] xwi [J] 
to lock somebody up; Ozo 
mu w Od£ xwi ['"-J] Ojo locked 
Ode up. mu ['] ze ['] na ['] to 
feed ("to give chop") (invisible) 
spirits, i.e. witches, sree [ # %], 
juju messengers (not jujus); it 
is not a sacrifice with slaughter- 
ing, and if a chicken is given it 
has been killed before at home 
(v. wa [J] n-aze [/] "to give 
food to witches" by way of 
slaughtering an animal on the 
spot), mu followed by nouns: 
mu^awe [ " J to fast ; mu^egbe 
[.."] to get, be, ready; to dress; 
omu w egbe [."*] he is ready, 
m-sti [/] to be able, cf. s-eti 
[/]; om-sti tu w ee [,''\] he is 
able to do it. mu idada 
to guess ; idada-t-umu na [ # /' \ ] 
you are only guessing ! v. mu w iro 
["J. mu igbina [*\ ] to make 
peace ; to settle a fight. mu w iro 
[" ] to guess a riddle; omu e 
[/>] "he has got it" (by 
guessing), v. also ta [']. mu Jf 

rhiirhu ["/] to be, become 
mouldy, v. si 1 [']. mu ['] 
ixo [ ] to let blood ; omu ti-ixo 
n-owie [.'..V] he let my blood 
this morning, m-obo [/] to do 
something very much, or, well; 
om-obo gua gbe [..V*] he 
knows well how to dance; om- 
obo r-iga^i [,."/] he eats much 
Gari. mu w oha [ '] to be ter- 
rible, frightening; to terrify; 
omu u-oha [ # # / ] it makes me 
afraid. m-ohio|;o [*\] to be 
desolate, of a house, mu ['] ohu 
(m-ohu) [ _ ] to be angry ; om- 
ohu Ce [,./] he is angry with me 
(not as strong as xu w iwu [".]). 
m-ose [/] to be beautiful, nice. 
mu w oto [ " t ] to become serious 
(A. Biogr.) mu w okpetu [ , . / ] to 
be unfortunate in something. 
mu w oto (m-oto) [' \] to be rusty; 
opia na mu^oto [V. .] this 
matchet is rusty, m-ugbo ["] 
to do farm work (as one's busi- 
ness: "to be a farmer"), m- 
uri ([*•] pf.) to stop temporarily 
in doing something (of growing, 
bearing children, or work) ; uhuo- 
ofg m-uri his growth 

(lit. "head") has stopped (for 
some time); eo-om-ofe m-uri 
[ 'J '•] "her child-bearing (e5- 
omo'[;-] "matter of child") 
has stopped (for some time)", 
v. kp£ w eri [.'.]. mu in com- 
bination with noun and verb: 
mu w aro da [,.JJ] "to take 
(carry) eye towards": to face; 
if a muwaro da-re [\..JJ,] they 
are facing him. mu £bo ["J 
gbe ['] to swear juju on some- 
body by going actually to the 
shrine and solemnly swearing by 
the god, v. t-ihe [.\L ti-ebo [/.] 
which only imply calling the 

god's name as a curse on some- 
body, and also any minor kind 
of curse in which no god is men- 
tioned; omu w £bD gb-ee [/\*\] 
he swore j u j u on him . mu w £ti [* / ] 
n y a IS] to trust in somebody; 
uwE w imu w etI nya o-i-aya-ru w 

e^ugbugbe hia [ \J\.;~] 

"it is you I am trusting in 
whenever I am doing it (at all 
times)", mu^idobo yi 
egbe [/] " to put obstacle to 
(one's) body" : to hinder; to put 
something in one's way (v. gbe 
[J] ods [/]). m-unu y-egbe 
[.Y] "to take mouth to one's 
body": (a) to be quiet (used as a 
command only) : m-un-ue y-egbe 
[J!) shut up ! (b) (followed by 
gbe [']): to announce oneself as 
the Oba's wife ; any woman may 
declare herself to be the Dba's 
wife if she does not agree with 
her husband, and from that 
time on he must leave her alone. 
The Dba may, however, have her 
decision revoked by the OsodI 
[*..] if he does not want to 
marry the woman, or if he has 
sympathy with her husband; 
om-unu y-egb-sre gbe [/* "] 
she proclaimed herself to be the 
Oba's wife, m-use [ . ' ] gie [ ' ] to 
give somebody agricultural help ; 
also: y-use [/] gie ['] (ya [*]); 
im-use gi-£e [."*•>] I helped 
him with use [/ ] . 

mu 2 ['] (i) to be sharp; ab£ na 
mu ["/] this knife is sharp; 
cf. Yor. mu [']. (2) to be sour, 
of soup which has been standing 
for some time; unwooe na mu 

this soup is sour. 

mu 3 [ ' ] to be dark ; only used with 
£d£ [/] "day"; e d£ mu [ \] it 
(lit. ' ' the day ") is dark ; v. so 2 [ * ], 


mu 4 ['] in mu [*] dia ['] to 
stand; to stop. Idiom.: iy-ow- 
okpa mu dia [.W] "I stand 
on one leg": I have not yet 
reached a decision (in a palaver, 
or in any problem) . mu ['] dia 
[ ' ] na [ ' ] to stand bail for some- 
body; mu dia m£ w itey-owa re 
[.."..'*] " stand bail for me until 
I go home and return", i.e. until 
I have returned; ova n-imu dia 
na 1e fua [..'7 A/] the man 
for whom I stood bail has run 
away (which is said to happen 
often) . mu □ dia ['] xe [J] to 
wait for somebody; mu dia x£ 
6£-y-ide [.././] "wait for me 
for I am coming " ! Redupl. in : 
imu dia mu dia [/•/] I waited 
and waited, 
mua 1 [J] in mua [J] £{)£ [ # J 
to disobey; to argue; p-gu is 
mua w £i5£ [*/; ] "don't argue 
(the) matter with me": don't 
disobey me ! omua v-sve [,J\] 
' ' he argued my word " : he dis- 
obeyed me (also mua [']). 
mua 2 [J] to multiply; inya na 
mua gbe [' m J'] "this yam has 
multiplied"; not of the harvest, 
but of an amount or piece of 
yam which has yielded more 
fufu than expected (also mua 
[*]) ; mua is also used of money 
that multiplies by trading. 
muegb£doo [' ' • J] a bird, rather 

big, similar to idu [ ' J (a dove) ; 
cries at night, arid in the 
evening and morning. Its cry, 
believed to be caused by worm- 
bite, is interpreted as "(I am) 
ready for Benin", i.e. a cry to 
affirm its willingness to go and 
serve the Oba, while, on the 
other hand, the worms that in 
Bini belief cause it to cry are 

thought to be a punishment for 
a previous refusal to serve the 
Oba. Another interpretation is 
a mockery directed at boys 
whose mouth is affected by 
yaws : (u)nu ofiofio [."" J] {cf 

ofi [/]). The bird is also called 
osaikpe [J J], 

mus [ ( ] faint ; faintly (of a light) . 

m-ugbo [ " ] , m-uri [**],m-unu [/], 
m-use [/]; cf, mu I. 

tnuma ["] (or: mu ['] ma ['] ?) to 
be pressed together, e.g. cigar- 
ettes in a case, or butter melted 
in a lump; cf. mama [/]. 

(e)n- i relative particle (not in- 
dispensable) ; the following pro- 
noun which is closely linked up 
with it has low tone in the ipf . 
and high tone in the pf., e.g. 
n-oru w se [.'""%] who does; n- 
oru w se [■'"%] who did; in the 
plural, i can be used with the 
relative particle, e.g. ekita n-ibu 
[",/] many dogs (dogs that are 
numerous) . 

n- 2 a particle conveying, to- 
gether with a particular con- 
struction (auxiliary ya[J; tense- 
particle -a ["]), the idea ex- 
pressed by the English " instead 
of doing . . . " ; n-u-ayaru w se, 

ukelsfua [//"W^] instead of 
doing it you ran away. Possibly 
the particle is identical with 
(e)n- i, and the sentence a re- 
lative clause. 
(e)n- 3 particle introducing a sub- 
junctive (with a high or mid- 
tone pronoun) ; ow-en-iru w ee 
[,'"\] (we [J]) he told me^to 
do it. 

na i ['] (i) to give; the verb has 
three other different forms em- 
bodying the objective pronouns 

of the singular, viz. me ['] (to 
give me), nu£, nwue [J] (to give 
you), and tie [%] (to give him), 
e.g. in orhi-£re ms [/V] ne 
gave it me; irhi-£re nwus [/ *\ J] 

I gave it you ; irhi-Ere ne [ /\) 

I am giving it him; (2) aiso ex- 
presses that something is done 
for somebody: oru w ee ne [/^\] 
he did it for him; n-ooa n-ima 
nwina na yiuo ['.... 'X/] 
where is the man for whom we 
are working?; cf me ['], n£ [%], 
nwu£ [J], 

na 2 ['] to tell; to narrate (to 
somebody: ma [/]); yena w £ma 
OE-y-iho n-ih5 [''.,' J J \] don't 
tell it me for I don't want to 
hear (it) . n-erhuuu [ *. . ] to bless 
(somebody: na [']) ; occasionally 
the blessing is accompanied by 
the speaker taking his exwae [ \ ] 
and blowing over it in trie 
direction of the man whom he 
blesses (curses are emphasised 
by touching one's lips with 
the lips and then spitting); 
on-erhuuu n£ [ # '. .\] he blessed 
him. n-iny£ ['J to gossip; 
to defame ; yEyin-iny-ooi^Erse 
[..'">] don't defame somebody 
else's son ! 

na 3 ['] in n-ema [\] to tie the 
yam branches to the yam poles 
(ikpEsi [...] and eye [/]) by 
means of ropes or creepers 
(ika [*J e.g.) in order to spread 
them out; oy-ugbo n-ods ya 
n-ema [/. he went to the 
farm yesterday to (go and) tie 
the yam branches up; cf inema 
[...]; v. ha^ema [/J, vi-ab- 
ema [./J. 

na 4 [ ' ] an auxiliary verb used in 
relative clauses when the rela- 
tion is a temporal, causal, or 


local one: "when"; "where"; 
' 1 therefore 1 ' ; o-e^e n-inare 
[.,'V] at the time when I 
came; v. ya 2 [']. 
na [ J (i) attributive demonstra- 
tive pronoun: "this"; preceded 
by a high tone, e.g. ooa na[7J 
this man. (2) at the end of a 
sentence it means something like 
"now", but perhaps it implies a 
notion of locality as well ; ukp5 w 
uxie na [...*.] are you selling 
cloth now, i.e. as you are 
standing here; with nia [/] in- 
stead of na, it would mean : are 
you selling now or not? e.g. 
when the man addressed is 
fidgetting with the cloth ; cf. ona 

[.,]; ». ni [/]. 

n-aka ['.] (1) middle (?); only in 
sd-eke n-aka [/ / J the day inter- 
mediate between two rest-days, 
i.e. the second day after each 
rest-day (eke [/]); perhaps it 
means, however, originally "the 
minor eke." (2) mild; innocuous; 
in ame n-aka [./J mild rain, 
and, perhaps, in enye n-aka 
[..'.] grass-snake; cf. (e)ne [\|. 

(e)nafe [\] idiom, for n-onya-fe 
[*•.] "his master"; v. also 
arowa [...]; enafue 00 [ . \£ J ] 
where is your master ? (n-onya 
fug DO r\Y/]); cf. nya 1 [J]. 

(e)n-ao-usi ['*"•] all the time ; ke-n- 
at5-usi yade [,"'-J] "from all 
the time coming": since all the 

. time; cf. (e)ne usi [/]. 

(e)ne ['] or ["%] a demonstrative 
element apparently to some 
extent equivalent to the English 
definite article ; it is always put 
in front of the noun qualified by 
it, but if the noun is followed by 
the name of a locality, the ne 
stands before this, e.g. Oxwahe 


n-ixue [. " tne Oxwahe of 
Ixue". It occurs also in a 
reduplicated form: nene ['•] 
which probably is more em- 
phatic, e.g. noua [*\] "the man 
(spoken of) ", nen-oua ["*>]" that 
very man". If a noun is re- 
peated with the ne placed be- 
tween the two repetitions, the 
meaning of the noun is aug- 
mented by the notion "big", or 
"real, main, principal", e.g. 
imaze y-ooa n-ooa-re, amaw- 

uwer\.V.-.Y](w£[/]) I do 
not mind a big (i.e. important) 

man, how much less you; 

inwina n-inwina w inwina ne na 

[...>. /.V.] something like 
"this is a good job of work I 
did for him". When preceding 
nouns expressing time like ede 
[/] "day", eye [..] "time", 
ukpo [ '] "year", it conveys 
the idea of "ago", e.g. n-ede 
[Y] or ['•] "in the old time", 
"in the old days", as in 
ekpo n-ede ot-uwa na w iherh-ukp5 

["''.'J.'".] " in tne olci time s 
your age-group did not yet wear 

cloth" (to a young boy); fur- 
ther: n-ukpo "last year" 
(cf. ukpo na [ ' ] or n-ukpo na 
"this year"), with the forms 

n-ekp-ia two years ago", 

lit. "three years ago", as the 
current year is included in 
the calculation, n-ekp-ene ['••] 
"three (lit. four) years ago", 
n-ekp-ise ['*•] "four (lit. five) 
years ago", etc.; v. n-ev- ['], 
eye [.J, ede [/], node [\]. 
Finally, ne is often used in front 
of the ordinal numbers, e.g. in 
n-okao [' J "the first", n-ogieva 
[\J "the second", etc. which 
can also (without the exception 

of "the first") occur preceded 
by ukp-, as e.g. in n-ukp-ogieha 
[\.] "the third". 

n-ema ['J; cf. na 3 [']. 

n-erhuuu [\ J; c/. na 2 [*]. 

ns 1 ['] to defaecate; sne [^%] he 
is constipated. 

ne 2 ['] already; often used after 
fo [}] "finished", but also after 
other verbs ; ofo ne ra [ / \ J is it 
already finished? 

ns [J "he" and "it", when 
followed by 00 [J] "where is"; 
cf. also le [ . ] ; if e [ . . ] is also used, 
but only of human beings, while 
ne is used of things mostly; ns 
00 [ m J] where is it? 

ns cf. na 1 [']. 

n-sv- [ ' ] an element preceding the 
word ede [/] "day" combined 
with a numeral, or one of the 
nouns meaning a certain number 
of days; it adds the idea of 
"ago", cf. (e)ne [.\]; e.g. n-ev- 
use [*••] "five days ago" (in- 
cluding to-day, i.e. according to 
European calculation four days 
ago); n-Ev-edEha ['VJ six 
(five) days ago; n-Ev-Eds-hifo 
[".'.] seven (six) days ago; 
n-£ v-8dE w tuoaue ["..."] eight 
(seven) days ago; n-Ev-uhuouru 
['*..'] nine (eight) days ago; 
n-Ev-Eds-gbe [ ' * / ] ten (nine) days 
ago ; but without n-£v : uki okpa 
[.."] a month ago (also: in a 
month) ; v. eye 

ni 1 [ ' ] (1) to capsize ; yaye o-oko 

na ni LA .73 look (how) the 
canoe is capsizing! oko n-oni 
[,/\] a capsized canoe. (2) to 
upset a canoe; to make it 
capsize ; urani w oko na ta [ " • # # ' # ] 
do you want to upset this canoe? 
ni 2 ['] to give thanks for food 
given; v. kada [*% J and bukp£ 

['.]; uni ns [J'"] can you not 
thank him? 

ni 3 [•] to decide, stipulate the 
amount of fees to be paid by 
members of a society; n-ani m£ 
ona xi ["•./] lit. "what has 
been stipulated (as subscription) 
for me is this" (also m-ona 
[%.])• Also n-ryo [•'], e.g. in 
if a n-iyo m£ ze [*."\] they de- 
cided on a (certain amount of) 
money for me to pay. 

ni [J] (preceded by a high tone) 
demonstrative pronoun : ' ' that ' ' . 
It occurs also in the form fi, 
which, however, is rejected by 
A. ; ofla ni that man. It is 

also used after a relative sen- 
tence, e.g. ooa nore ni ose oe no 

[..'V.. '] "that man who has 
come (or, 'the man who has 
come there'?) is my friend". 
Further, it is used after other 
verbal forms: uxia ni [''J] 
something like: "are you going 
over there ? " or, " you over there, 
are you going ? " cf. oni (of 1) ['/]; 
v. na [J. 

nia (also fia, which is rejected by 
A.) [J] now; uyayo nia 
uxia nia [''J] are you going 
now? It is never used at the 
beginning of a sentence ; but v. 
eba [.%]. 

nig [J] to stretch; oniEfg [ / ] it 
is stretched; oni-ofE [ # /J he is 
stretching it. 

n-iyo [*']; cf. ni 3 [*]. 

n-iny£ ["J; cf. na 2 [']. 

(e)n-od£ J yesterday (the n- is 
the "definite article"; cf. (e)ne 

no [J] to ask; n-ota [/] to ask a 
question; in-of-ota [ /] I am 
asking him a question ; in-5t-ei3i 
[..A] 1 am asking him some- 



thing (i is not nasalised in the 
last sentence). 

n-okpa [Y] (pi. n-e-) the other; 
£oo n-ekpa [..Yl "the other 
countries": abroad ; mu^eoirebo 
n-okpa m£ [..".".'] bring me 
the other plate! cf. (e)ne f\], 
okpa [" ]. 

n-oxwa [' ] (pi. n-exwa) big; erha 
noxwa [ ' ] a big tree; idiom.: 
em n-exwa [./.] "the big 
things": an Oba's funeral; if a 
n-exwa [*/ J ' 'the big ones" : the 
witches; cf. (e)ne ["%]. 

nununu [ * * * ] dark (of the sky be- 
fore rain; an old expression); 
used with the verb bi [']; v. 
kakaaka ['*']. 

nwa i [J] (i) to grow up (of men 
and animals) ; oooxa na f eko nwa 
de xerhexerhe [.J .J J J""] 
this child is growing up (' 'come " 
step by step, lit. "small small") ; 
inwafs I am grown up. 

n-onwaf £ [ 'J t ] a grown-up man 
(from about 40 years of age); 
wabu en-inwajx n-ifa gua y-£z- 

uwa[...V.V/\]"you W g° 
and meet senior people that 

they may decide (lit. ' talk into') 

your case (or, quarrel) ". (2) to 

be sensible, reasonable ; onwagbe 

[."*]• I.J ] be is very sensible. 

nwa 2 [J] to be bright (of the 
day); £d£ f£ko nwa n£ [.'.J J'] 
the day is getting bright now 
(when the morning mist is 
vanishing); £d£ nwa m-oto (mu 
[']) [.V'J "the day has be- 
come clear to the ground" : it is 
light (i.e. at 6.30 or 7 a.m.) ; 
cf. nwa i [/](?). 

nwa 3 [J] to praise; oyanwa-t;- 
ova nwa-u-eni [/./.'.] "he is 
praising his nickname (or, praise- 

name) and praising his name": 
he is quoting his praise-name 
and his name, adding praises 
(in order to obtain something) ; 
(the r/s following nwa are not 
nasalised) . 

nw-ame ['J; cf. nwo [*]. 

nwananwana [ ]; cf. enwana- 

nwana [ ' 1. 

L- • • • • -J 

nwani£ [/] (1) to reply. (2) to 
acknowledge a man formally 
(a) as the betrothed of one's 
(infant) daughter, (b) as the 
trustee for some animals handed 
over to his care. In both cases, 
the man is called oruag [.~\]. 
The acknowledgment is sanc- 
tioned by a sacrifice to one's 
erha ["] in the case (a), and to 
one's oho [/] in (b). The pro- 
cess is called enwante [."V] m 
the case of (b), and inwaniomo 
[ ] in that of (a), onwante 

S £ 'U e [.. '.] "be confirmed me 
in it" (i.e. as son-in-law, or as 
trustee); cf. xuinis [/]. 

nwano [ '] to separate. 

nwanwa ["\"\], [*\] just now 
(cf enwa [ # "\]); yade nwanwa 
[ . V\] come just now ! (in quick 
speech, yade [ ' ] is heard instead 

of VJ}). 

nwanwanwa [ ><# ] (also nwaenwae 
[ ]) shining; of velvet, igbegbe 
[."]'> Japanese silk, (etiafa 
[/\ ]); igbegbe na fi nwagnwag 
[/"/.J this igbegbe stuff is 

shining; cf. nwananwana [ ]. 

nwi£ [J] (1) to w r ear off (of things 
which rub against one another, 
or are tightened, such as parts 
of machines, screws, but also 
e.g. a belt, or clothes wearing out 
through long use) . (2) to squeeze 
something (so that it falls to 
pieces) . 

nwihi [/] to scent; to smell 
(pleasantly; but v. wia [/]); 
verbal noun: unwihioe [,'%.]. 

nwina [/] to work; nwina-y-aso 
de [.j/J] work, for the night 
is coming ! cf. inwina [_]. 

nwo ['] to drink (water and non- 
alcoholic beverages) ; onw-ame 
[.'.] he is drinking; onw-enwe 
[,.\] it is drinking milk (i.e. 
suckling, of a baby), da [*] is 
used with alcoholic drinks, but 
nwo alone, without an object, 
means "to drink (alcohol)" in 
an emphatic way, in the follow- 
ing: ooenwo [ m \] he is (very) 
drunk again ! and as answer to 
a question: onwo [/] he drinks, 
i.e. he is a habitual drunkard 
(worse than od-anyo [..']). 

nwonwonwo [_ ] yellowish (like 
half -withered leaves; used with 
the verb ba [/]). 

nweefg [••] thin; narrow; oua 
nw££fe no [/•*.] he is a thin 
man; o(3a ne nwEEfg [..'••] a 
thin man; owa n-oye nweefe 
er-urabo t a [.."'•/ *\J is it a 
narrow house you are going to 

nwue [J]; cf. na i [']. 

n Y a 1 [ ] (i) to open (mouth, eye) ; 
n Y a □ aru_a (short for rua) 
L..J] lit. "to open somebody's 
eye": to cause admiration; 
et)-Dr£ nya o-aru_a gbe [ J % • ] 
lit. "his matter has opened my 
eye very much": I admire him 
greatly (the r. is not nasalised), 
ny-unu [ / ] to open one's mouth, 
nya ['] unu [/] to astonish; to 
surprise; onya u-unu [//] it 
surprised me (v. kpa 2 ['] 
odi ["]). (2) to tear apart a 
piece of wood partially split, or, 

a branch of a tree (v. 1) where 
the mouth and eye are also 
"split" openings; also nya ['] 
fua [*]; v. igggg ]. 

nya 2 ['] (1) to tire; to weaken; 
used with obo [/] and owe [ # J, 
apparently after some exercise 
only; v. wo [J] which is used 
with egbe [/] only, and xa 2 [J], 
huhu [/], used of food; owe 
nya t5e [,/•] "(my) feet have 
weakened me": my feet are 
tired (after a walk) . 

nya 3 [*] to be bright, ablaze 
(fire); onya kpoo [/J it is very 
bright, in full blaze; v. ba 

nya [J an auxiliary verb used in 
connection with rhirhii [ * ' ] ; in- 
dicates a generalizing clause, best 
translated by "ever, however" 
or "possibly"; o-onyarhirhii m 
yaye he, t-iyami-oe [J / * ' 'J ' • . y ) 
however (possibly) it may be, 
I shall certainly see him; eoi 
n-onya-rhirhiiyaxi, t-iyamu w e 
[..J. '•>] whichever thing 
it may (possibly) be, I shall 
certainly catch it; e.g. when 
fighting against the influence of 
witches, or else, of an animal 
that has entered the house at 

n y a 1 [J] (1) to possess; to own; 
f-onya w ebe na [J~- 9 ] it is 
he who owns this book; m- 
onya w (o)wa na it is I 

who own this house; ya nya-fe 
[ V] wno °wns it? whose is it? 
n-onya Ce ['-.] "my Lord" 
(BibL); my master; but n-onya 
Be [ V ] ne who spoilt me, v. nya 
3 [/]; n-onya-eoa ["••.] "our 
Lord". (2) to be above; oketota 
nya w uhuu-en-ekp£ti [ . ' V . . ' ' ] 
and he was sitting on the box ; 
okeri w oba nya agbo hia [ / • • • # # '] 




and he ruled over the whole 
world; v. mu [']. 
nya 2 [J] to promise, in nya w enya 

[..'];»• ve t'Ldei [']. 

n ya 3 [/] to spoil a child, by 
wrong education. 

nyaya [/] to tear to pieces (cloth, 
mat, net); v. so [J] which 
implies tearing across only so 
that the damage can be mended; 
onyaya C-ukp5 [..'*.] he tore my 
cloth to pieces (may be in- 
tensified by nyayanyaya, [ ]) ; 

cf. nyayanyaya [...J. 

nyayanyaya [ ] describes the 

tearing of cloth; cf. nyaya [/]. 

nyaka [*] to walk like a cripple, 
with legs wide apart; also of 
egwi [/]. 

nyaka [ # J big; of the heads of 
human beings and big tortoises 
only; of-uhuou nyaka (ru [*]) 

t;-...] he has a big head. 

nyamafa [ #> J (also nyamarha) 
wide; of something round or 
oval like a man's mouth, or 
a round pond; used with the 
verb o£ [*]; v. gbodoo ["]. 

nyamia [/] to forget; onyamiae 
ya ta ma ve [..'...*] he forgot 
to tell me (possibly the high 
tone of -miae implies a ne- 
gative belonging to the following 
verb) . 

nyamnyam [ ## ] carousing. 

nyanya [/] (1) to yawn; to sigh. 
(2) to flash, of distant lightning, 
unaccompanied by thunder ; od- 
uxuou [."..] (or ame [..]), nyanya 
[/] lightning is flashing afar. 

nyarhunyarhu [ ] describes the 

walk of a short stout man with 
fiat feet; used with the verb 
xia [*]. 

ny-eho [ *] to be deaf; ony-eho 
[/*] he is deaf; oteny-eho [//] 

he was deaf (before, but no 
longer now). 
n y £ [J] to press; to knead (?); 
nye w igati ni [,','J] press that 
gari! nye w egbe [_'] to strain 
in delivery, or when going to 

nysyeny ey eny eye ['*..*] curled 
like (the) hair of an African 
and also thin ; e.g. of the spring 
of a watch; used with the verb 

ye [•]• 

nyi 1 [ ] to be thick, of grass, 
i.e. to be hard to cut; ifuou 
na nyi, iseti gb-D£ fo-rs 

L/."V.'V/.] this g ra p s j s 

thick, I cannot finish cutting it 

nyi 2 ['] in nyi ['] ehis ["] to 
pinch with the finger-nails, e.g. 
in order to tell a man that some- 
body present is lying, or as a 
joke (possibly nyo?). 

n yi [J] t° nve (somewhere); to 
stay; ikanyi sdo yi [/..V] 1 
have stayed in Benin before; 
idiom.: onyi w unyiu-esi [...*\J 
"he is leading a good life": he 
has good manners, nyi [J] 
ke [ ' ] to be near ; d-ooa n-unyi 
ke L. V] "which man do you 
stay near to ? " : who is your 
neighbour? orpma n-onyi k-oku 

[...V. ] "Drama which is near 
the sea" (epithet of the river 
Drama though there is only one 
river of that name); cf. unyios 

nyiyz [. ] to be very lean, of 
human beings or animals; cf. 

nyiyenyiye [ ]. 

nyiygnyiye [ — ] very lean, of a 
human being, or an animal; 
used with the verb ye [ ' ] ; if 
the subject is plural, nyiyenyij 
ygnyiye ["..*'] is used. 

ny-unu [/]; cf. nya i [']. 

nyuou [/] (i) to shine (of the 
sun); ove nyuou [..."VI the sun 
shone. (2) to become glazed, of 
eyes in death, or in a faint; 
followed by rua which is also 
shortened to ua, oa ; onyuo-aro-a 
oorawu [..'..."] "he changed 
his eye' 1 when he was about 
to die. 

o [•] (or [•], according to the pre- 
ceding tone) an emphatic par- 
ticle, added e.g. to greetings; 
koyo o [ * ' • ] hullo ! (as reply, or 
used when at a distance from 
the addressed). 

oba [/] a pattern similar to a 
chain; oba n-ufi [_*J "two 
hundred oba": two chains in- 

obele [\ J paddle. 

obsko ["\] side of abdomen; cf. 
£ko [.\]. 

obsle [',.] track cut through the 
bush with a matchet, not 
cleaned; mostly a casual track 
not destined to be used as a 
path. Once a track is cleared, it 
is an ods [/]. 

obi [ J poison. 

obisoe [V] a snake; striped and 
shining like velvet, very beau- 
tiful ; harmless ; v. enys [/]. 

obiriki [..."] thro wing-net (for 
fish) ; cf. Jekri obiriki [..."]. 

obobo 1 ['.'] a timber tree, two 
kinds: the white Obobo: obobo 
nofua ['..*']' Guarea Kennedyi; 
and the black: obobo nexwi 
['..**] G. thompsonii. 

obobo 2 ['/] a food: cooked yam, 
mashed with oil. 

obobo [V.] flower. 

obodo [ _ J turning rapidly round 
in dancing, pirouette ; v. gbe 1 [ * ]. 

[.'] (1) arm, hand. (2) side; 
ob-erha [/'] "father-hand": 
right-hand side ; ob-erh-ooa 
[.'%.] a man's right-hand side, 
v. ods [/]; ob-iye [/'] "mother- 
hand": left-hand side; hence 
also: ob-okpa [/*] one way. 
(3) from (with eo- 1), e.g. od-oe 
o-obo Oe [."%..'] "he bought it 
in my hand": from me. (4) 
handle, in ob-ikeks [ ' '] handle 
of a bicycle. (5) "the hand" 
as a force that is worshipped; 
v. ikega [^J; (6) title of a 
chief who represents the Dba's 
Odd (in the sense described 
under 5); one of the "body- 
titles" (egi-egbe [/'•]); cf abo 

C. ]• 

obokeoE [..%J quickness; alert- 
ness; obokeu-ofg o-eui n-aru ye 

Ce .ne gbe [./ VV] "his 

quickness in doing things pleases 
me much in him (ne [\])"; cf, 
oho [;i kse2 [/]. 

obws ["*] clay from river bank, 
used by potters, and by black- 
smiths to build funnels for their 

oda [*•]; v. gbe 1 [*] oda ["], and 
idaw-esi ["••]. The original 
meaning seems to be "heel". 

odede [* ] senior; grand-, in 
names of relationship, v. iye [ " ] 
and erha ["]; oded-efioi ["/J 
senior of the Dvia [ *]-society; 
v. ekeze[./], iye f]. 

°d £ [ . ] (1) general term for way, 
road. (2) a cleared bushpath; 
od-aboto [ # \ J a short-cut not 
known to the public; od-ofiamu 
L~\.*] short way (general term) ; 
cf fia [*], mu [']; v. okuo [/\]; 

"°t e [.""] entrance to the 
compound (from the street); 
v. obsk [\J, ukpo [•.], fia f]. 



(3) manner of doing something; 
ode n-ifa ru w £e la ona xi 

[..'.. J'. .1 " th e way they do it 
(pass) is this" : that is how they 
do it. (4) (with following geni- 
tives denoting locality), expands 
the area referred to by the 
following genitive, making the 
precise significance into some- 
thing more vague, od-aro [/\] 
in front, ahead; in front of. 
od-iyeke [.%..] at the back ; be- 
hind; od-iyek-owa [.'*.'] behind 
the house, od-ob-erha [/"] 
the right side ; la y-od-ob-erha w a 
(*e [J]) [./•/] go to the right 
("way of hand of your father"), 
od-uxuou [/.J upwards; above; 
od-uxuo-efe [,'.J.] above it. 
od-owara straight on, 

used metaphorically in od-owara 
et-oguaJO-ofe la . /. . J'] 
"straight on it is (that) he is 
talking his word pass": he is 
talking in simple, plain words. 
Expressions of a more specified 
meaning: od-uw-owa [." '] (uwu 
[ " ]) inner apartments of a house 
where guests do not usually 
enter, i.e. the last iku [ and 
its uyuya and ogwa [/]). 

od-sris [/'] women's apartment 
in a house, harem (me [/] alone 
usually means "Dba's harem"), 
odi 1 [ " ] (1) wall round compound 
in houses of the old type, (new 
houses opening directly on the 
street). (2) room between com- 
pound wall and buildings. (3) 
neighbourhood, district ; cf. Yor. 
odi [••]. 

odi 2 ["] a deep spot in a 

odf [/] a position in the ogwega 
[/\ J -divination (o.c.c.o.); of 
Yor. origin? 

odi [ ' ] deaf and dumb person ; cf 

Yor. odi [•']. 
odibo [ mmm ] favourite servant who 

knows all the secrets of his 


odigba [_ J (1) broad coral collar 
worn by the Dba and some 
chiefs; often seen in brass- 
work; e.g. L.R. p. 23. (2) ap- 
pellative for a pig's neck. 

odiyi [ _ J (1) natural pond or lake 
as caused by a river (e.g. at 
Obajere, Iyanomo, Udo and ArT 
nya ["*]); v. oyodD [...]. (2) an 
ihe [/\] near Udo [/]. 

odioua [_] sacrificial killer (be- 
heading at human sacrifices in 
the old days) ; cf. ova [ # \]. 

odo [**] (wooden) mortar; cf. 
Yor. odo [•*]. 

odo 1 [\] (1) mangrove, Afzelia 
bipindensis; also called odo n- 
inia ['/*] "the root mangrove", 
from its many long roots; odo 
n-owse [*.\] "the male man- 
grove" is Rhizophora racemosa, 
with stronger wood. (2) sort of 
potash (stronger than ikau [.']); 
obtained from the wood of the 
mangrove by cooking it and 
leaving the water to evaporate 
on the fire ; used to thicken soups 
(owo [/]), and also in the pre- 
paration of medicines. 

odo 2 ['J a disease: probably 

ododo [*/] scarlet-cloth; cf. Yor. 
ododo [../]. 

Ododua name of a mas- 

querade held during agws^oyens 
[ *' *]; the masquerade is also 
called stit5i w ododua [ t 'J ^ ] ; 
cf. Yor. Odudua [ • ) \ ] and Bini 
Oyodua ["."%]. 

odo [ ^] there (further away than 
eoa [."%], and less distinct); if a 


r-odo [\'\] they are there; dey- 
odo hia ma [' ' ' J] is everything 
all right there? (lit. "all the 

odoyo [ #> J (i) froth coming out 
of children's or sick people's 
mouths. (2) caul. 

odudu ['/] a children's disease: 
spasms; odudu was stated to be 
a witches' name because they 
are as merciless as the disease. 

oduma [ # / ] hyena (probably) ; not 
native to Benin, but occasion- 
ally shown round by northern 
(Nupe) people. Said to knock a 
man down with its fist (!), and 
to restore him to life by a 
second blow. 

of e [ '] rat; mouse; cf. Yor. of 5 

ofi [. ] yaws. 

ofigbo ["J palm-oil; ofigbo-f-ima 

d £ [ . . ] ^ is palm-oil we are 

ogi- ['.] prefix used in the forma- 
tion of ordinal numerals, with 
the exception of okao [ ] 
"first", e.g. ogieva [\J (a) 
second; (b) companion; play- 
mate; colleague; somebody liv- 
ing at the same house (as a term 
of address, oko [/] is used); 
ogieha [\J third; ogigbe [\J 
tenth, also ukpogieva [.".J etc. 

ogi [..] a creeper, Citrullus vul- 
garis; its fruit; it produces seeds 
which are used as ingredients of 
eo-arie [ /] "native butter". 

Ogiaoe [ /] (1) a chief who pro- 
bably is the descendant of a 
dynasty ruling in Benin before 
the present one. (2) a sib; its 
senior is the chief bearing the 
same title ; its centre is in Benin 
City on the left side of Sakpoba 
Road; the sib is said to be big 

and scattered everywhere; its 
greeting is la w eree [ ' ; v. egbee 

Ogida [/J (1) name of a village 
situated on the Siluko Road. 
(2) help in childbirth ; often given 
by inhabitants of the above- 
mentioned village, though now- 
adays it is no longer their special 

ogidigbo [...*] a drum (similar to 
oxa [..]); c f- Yor. ogidigbo [..•*]. 

°S ie [..] ( x ) a ruling chief, or, 
hereditary village-head ; in 
some praise-names the word 
also applies to the Oba, e.g. 
in ogie n-ony-agb5 nya w £fioi 
L.V... .] "the ruler who pos- 
sesses world and (possesses) 
world of the dead " ; ogie n-ogbo- 
t5a eds n-uwu w ix-5i5a (xo [J*]) 

[ *VJ "the ruler who 

kills a man on the day when he 
is not in need of death". The 
following expressions containing 
ogie have a special meaning: 

ogie^ioi-oto [..'..] " a ruler 
cannot sleep on the ground": 
a platform for sleeping, made of 
sticks and planks; also, a Euro- 
pean bed ; v. akpekps [ " ' ] ; ogie 
n-Et5o w uroyo [..*.'..] ''a ruler 
who has no servants": act of 
making an ihoi [_] in the 
game called ise n-ata ['..']. 
(2) senior, headman; ogi-ewaiss 
[.".,] senior of the ewaiss [_ ] 
who attend to the Oba's Osu [ / ] ; 
he represents the Oba at that 
shrine and acts for him. (3) main ; 
chief; principal, of animals, 
plants, objects; ogi-ava [/.J 
midday; ogi-skpoyoe a 
tree bigger than skpoyoe [,.%]; 
perhaps identical with uui n- 
£ sa [./J; og-ihuou [/'.] a 


bigger variety of millipede, with 
a red head; og-ixioi [/',] a tree, 
Kigelia africana; ogi-ovu [/, .] a 
tree, Antiaris africana] the bark 
is used in making a kind of 
leather bag (ekpoki ["'J); ogi- 

uro [.'..] & oa l» mainly on the 
board of the game called ise [ \ ], 
but also in general use. The 
following examples do not show 
tones indicating a genitive re- 
lationship as the preceding ones 
did: ogiaso [_J midnight; 
ogioha [ > t , ] " king of the bush " : 
a name for the leopard ; ogiukpo 
[ _ J dais (of mud) at the Sguae 
(for the Oba) as well as at the 
Ezomo's [""] house, at those of 
some big chiefs, and at the shrines 
of gods ; ogiuzo [ . . . ] an antelope, 
a little bigger than uzo ['J; its 
skin is similar to that of srhus 
[.']; of. egie [..], igie [..], ugie 


Ogi-efa [ # \ J (i) title of a chief. 
(2) a sib headed by the chief 
Ogi-efa [.'..]; the real name 
of this sib is probably Iso[ Its 
centre is at Benin City, to the 
left of Ikpoba Road. The greet- 
ing in the morning is la w eso 

['..]; cf. ogie [..]; v. cgbse [.■%]. 
ogie [/] laughter; ogis rhie vz 

[//]' " laughter takes me": I 

must laugh ; cf. gis [ ' ] . 
ogigba [."V] "wild yam" in bush, 

is not eaten; v. ema 2 [ ]. 
ogiogio [ a< J goodheartedness. 
ogiooibi [*'/] charcoal, used by 

blacksmiths; mixed with the 

leaf of ogbigbo [ /] applied to 

walls of houses (v. usie [ ']); cf. 

gig [Jl ibi [/]. 
Ogi-uwu [/*•] "king of Death" : 

the personified Death ; he causes 

thunder as well. 

ogo [ # J overgrown clearing in the 
forest indicating site of an old 
farm; og-ugbo [/'] is used with 
following ukpo [ '], e.g. in og- 
ugbo n-ukpo [,'.*Y] Iarm of last 
year; og-ugbo n-skpia [//'/] 

farm of last year but one (ogo 
alone is used as well) . 

°g° l0 [...] mantis; it is said to 
bring forth "snakes", i.e. small 
longish worms that come out of 
the body of a killed mantis; 
therefore it is called ogolo n-obi- 

sny s [ '] " mantis that bears 


°g°Co [..'] male of a-, or osele 
['/]; v. adeks [./]. 

[ . . . ] l° n g monkey-tail ; ogol- 
ems tail of monkey (more 

used than the single ogolo). 

ogu 1 [/] (pi. i-) (1) blacksmith, 
also: ogu emato [."••]; but 
°gu w 8pt5o [."..] is brass-smith. 
(According to more recent infor- 
mation from A., only the i- pre- 
fix is used in both these expres- 
sions.) Both blacksmiths and 
brass-smiths are "gangs" of the 
Oba; the brass-smiths form a 
separate sib (v. Igu w £foi5o [/ \ J). 
(2) the planet Mars. (3) ogu 
n-ams [,.*V] a sea-animal 
(whale, shark?); breaks canoes 
with its back, therefore called 
n-ova w oko [../] ''that breaks 
canoes"; cf. Ogu 2 [/]. 

Ogu 2 [/] the god of iron, smiths, 
hunters, and warriors; one of 
the highest gods in rank ; all the 
iron is under Ogu. His sanctum 
in the house (every compound 
has an Ogu) is composed of 
pieces of iron, but when a 
sacrifice is made all iron imple- 
ments must be taken to the 
Ogu. If one does not sacrifice 


to it one may wound oneself 
with a knife or any other iron 
tool. A reason for a sacrifice may 
be the too frequent menstrua- 
tion of a woman. The sacrifices 
consist mainly of dogs, tortoises, 
and snails, and oil must be used 
in them; cf. ogu i [/] and Yor. 
Ogu [J]) v. sfae 

ogua ["\] (i) a house at the 
Sguae [.J in which agws [.J 
is held. (2) occurs in oruerie 
n-ogua [ . . .* \ ] eunuch in attend- 
ance in the royal harem ; it seems 
that these eunuchs are victims 
of accidents during circumcision 
"due to their having been be- 

oguayo ['"J a timber tree, Khaya 
ivorensis, "Ogwango". 

ogue poverty (cannot be 

used with the verb gbe [']); v. 
ooi [/]. 

oguzuma [,",] a brown antelope. 

ogwa [ ## ] fish-basket (trap) . 

ogwega [."Y] (1) a tree, Detarium 
senegalense, also called erh- 
ogwsga [ .'\ J ; the seed is broken 
in two parts and put on strings 
(four halves on each string) as 
an instrument for divining. 
There is another tree bearing 
the name ogweg-odi [/'J, "the 
deaf ogwsga", Klainedoxa gabo- 
nensis; its fruit is used as a 
substitute for the ogwega [."%,] 
proper, though it is not believed 
to be as useful for the oracle. 
Another substitute is the fruit 
of the axwexwe ['/] tree. (2) 
the method of divination (v. also 
ominigbD [....]) in which the 
seeds of the above-mentioned 
tree are used. The instrument of 
divination consists of four strings 
each of which contains four 

halves of the seed. At one ei 
of each string a small bell (ero 
["']) and some cowries a 
fastened. The diviner (ob-ogwe 
L*V]) seizes one end of ea 
string and throws them with t 
intention of turning them upsi 
down. The subsequent arranj; 
ment of seeds is then analys 
(v. eria [/]) according to a certz 
code (itie [."]), the criteri 
being the "open" or "covere< 
position of the seed-halves. T 
analysis is said to proceed at fi: 
from the right side to the le 
and, after that, in the oppos 
direction, but as if the arranj 
ment were looked at from t 
other end of the strings. T 
different positions have nam 
e.g. odi [/] is a string with 1 
two outer seed-halves showi 
their inside, and the two ini 
halves showing their cov 
(Under the headings deali 
with these positions, o. v 
mean " open and c. " covers 
as reckoned from the top of 1 
string.) The names of 1 
positions are: odi [/], o^oi [ t 
oruhu [/J, oyae [/], ogbi [ 
ako [/], ose [/^ ohu [ 
srhoxwa [/J, ska [.'], oka [ t 
oua [ # J, eture ete [, 

oha [/] and eyita [ "]. As 1 
relations of two strings to c 
another are always consider 
these names are usually co 
bined, e.g. oh-oyae [/'] (c 
+ oyae). If both positions ; 
the same, their name is follow 
by n-abe [*\ ] " combined e 
oka n-abe [..%.]. The "code ,J 
this divination gives a fi? 
sentence for each of these co 
binations, and the task of 1 


diviner is to explain to his client 
the meaning of the sentences 
appropriate to the arrangements 
of seeds. As these represent 
certain typical situations in life, 
their corresponding names in 
the code are often used as 
idiomatic ("deep") expressions 
for these typical situations, v. 
eh-oyae [ ' ' ] and oka n-abe [..%.]. 
The actual throwing of ogwsga 
[."Y] is done in the following 
way : * 1 alligator-pepper ' ' (shl- 
§do [.***]) is chewed and spat on 
the instrument, then the client 
holds uk-iha [*\], "the mes- 
senger of the oracle", also called 
uta [ * . ] , in front of his mouth and 
asks the master of the oracle (oka 
[/]) his question. The obo then 
touches all the sixteen seed- 
halves, saying: w-of-etie n-oxare 

(we [.]) [Jj;j.] "do you 

know the word he has said?", 
puts uk-iha [*"\J between the 
strings and throws them so that 
the sroro [ * " ] and the cowries 
fall at his side. 

ogwi ["] mango tree and fruit, 
Irvingia gabonensis ; another sort 
is ogwi ebo [' "*]. 

ogwo [\] riot, fighting between 
people of the same town, or the 
same family; also igbin-ogwo 


ogba i [ J (i) fence. (2) fenced 
space, e.g. garden, yard; ogb- 
ore [*"] "fence of outside": 
(a) front part of odi [ " ] , the 
compound w T all ; (b) front part of 
the compound yard; ogb-oleya. 
['",] prison-yard, prison; cf 
Yor. ogba [• ]. 

ogba 2 ['J digging-stick for 
digging yams; pointed at one 
end, made of the heavy uxu 

wood; also called ogba n-aya 
kp-inya ['..'.'] "stick that is 
taken to dig yams"; v. ascgie 
[-], ubi[/]. 

Ogbe [ J the quarter of Benin 
City in which the Sguae [ J is 
situated; it is there that the 
Eyaeuo N-ogbe [...'.] are living. 

ogbe ["\] next year; ise 1-ogbe 
[/ *\] a salutation addressed to 
the giver of a present at eho [/]- 
time (cf. ise [.*], la [']); reply 
by the giver: ogbe magba ro 
["\/ v ] " (in the) new year 
we (shall) live together ! " 

Ogbelaka [\\] a band of people 
serving the Oba on several 
occasions: they dance at the 
coronation-day, beat the drum 
enwini ['/] at ugies [_], and 
perform ikiewua [...]; they have 
a special quarter at Benin 

Ogbeso name of a Bini 

village, seat of an Oxwahs [ t J J 

ogbs [_] house in which a big 
chief in Benin is buried; every 
chief living at the Ogbe [' ] 
quarter must have such a house 
in ore n-oxwa [*/J lit. "the big 
town", i.e. the other part of the 
town, as only the Dba is buried 
at Ogbe [/J. 

ogbi [*J a position in the ogwsga 

[.Y] -divination (; cf. 
Yor. ogbe [• ]. 

ogbigbi [ m J m ] rapid current of river, 
brook; ezs na ls w ogbigbi [ J % m t J] 
this river (or brook) flows 
rapidly; idiom.: ogbigbi sze Is 
[.J...J] "rushing flows the 
river": things are coming in 
plentifully; cf gbigbi [/]. 

ogbodu [_"] a small but noisy 
bird, the pin-tailed Whydah. 


ogboi [ J (i) an ignorant man; 

ogboi no o-en-ezo [ "] he is 

ignorant in the lawsuit. (2) 
somebody who is uninitiated 
into the mysteries of a cult. 

oyaba [ ## J a tree, Macrolabium 
macrophyllum ; the wood is used 
as firewood, the bark (or the 
juice) as a "medicine" to throw 
intended evil back on the ori- 

oyae (1) share, (2) in a 

specialized sense: share of any- 
thing divided given to the 
divider as payment for his work ; 
oyae d-ooad-oxD w ona xl[ ^ * / * ' ] 
this is everyone's share; cf. 
Xae [/]. 

Oyeye 1 [VJ name of a Bini 
village, seat of an Oxwahe [.„/.] 

oyeye 2 [V.] M fruit of the 
oxixa [*'J tree, Spondias tnon- 
bin(7). (2) the tree itself. 

oyss [ # J prostitution; c/. ye [^]. 

°X £ s [ . . ] flock (of pigs, sheep) . 

oyia [*J (1) enemy. (2) euphem- 
ism for "myself" "you", or 
"he", when saying unpleasant 
things, oyia ue ['.']: iw-oyia. oe 
tede [.'.*••] "I say (that) my 
enemy (I) nearly fell", oyi-a 
['.-/]: oyi-ajma V J' JJ\ you 
are not good (when speaking to 
a man of equal rank ; uma [J J,] 

would be impolite); iho-y-aw- 
amu w oyi-a n-ode [/.***..%.] I 
heard it said that you were 
arrested yesterday; v. oya [_], 

oyo [ t \] ram. 

oyoda J ingratitude. 

oyodi [ . } ' ] a " holding-up ' ' charm 
consisting of the real charm 
pressed down under an aba. ['J; 
it is used to hold up law-suits, 

to make people fall asleep when 
the owner of the charm is about 
to commit a theft, to render 
motor-cars immovable (said to 
be practised by Yoruba drivers 
with an agadagodo [/'••], the 
Yoruba equivalent of oyodi). 
Oyodua ["."%] a praise-name of 
Osa; used as translation of the 
Christian "Almighty" (Akugbe) 
Of Yoruba origin? cf Ododua 


oyoyo [ ># J yam-beetle; v. ekpa- 

kara [/"]. 
oyohe ["J a tree, Musanga 


oyoh5 ['/] the Vulturine Fish- 
Eagle; its white feathers are 
used in ceremonial dress. 

oyoi [ # m ] a position in the ogwega 
[ # ~\ . ]-divination (c.o.o.c.) ; of 
Yor. origin ? 

oyoroko [""•] hopping on one 
foot as practised by boys when 
playing; used also in a mas- 
querade (Dvia [/]) dance. 

oyoye [\J a crooked tree put in 
front of gods' shrines; is con- 
sidered to be a porter (cripple, 
u ^ e [..]) to the shrine; it is 
called oyoye n-sgua-ebo [*..*'..], 
"crippled wood of the god's 
sguae [..]". Since it has the 
power to obstruct prayers it is 
given a slice of kola before a 

prayer, and a share of a sacrifice. 
The F.D. list classes it as a 
separate species : Parinarium 
glabrum, but this may refer to 
one particular oyoye only, it 
being taken to be the Bini name 
for a tree species. 

oyuCu [ t# J prisoner of war. 

oha [/] bush; oh-igsdu [."'] 
timber concession; oh-oka [/J 
maize field. 


oha [/] fear; oha-fs mu t5e [././] 
"his fear is gripping me": I am 
afraid of him ; ooa n-oha, mu no 
[.../•] "a man whom fear has 
gripped he is" : he is a coward. 

oha [*J a very intoxicating drink 
obtained from the oyo ["] 

ohagba [ # # # ] native doctor's pupil 
(serving and learning at the 
same time); v. obo [/]. 

ohaha [*\] a tree, Macaranga 
barteri ; used for firewood only. 

ohaoe [ ] hunger, also ohao-unu 
[//]; ohaoegbeos [_/] "hun- 
ger is killing me": I am hungry ; 
oy-ohaoe gbe vz [."..."] "it took 
hunger killed me": it made me 

ong LYI W priest (who worships 
for a community) ; oh-5sa [."%.] 
priest of Osa; oh-5kpo [/•] 
priest of the year (at Oza ['*]), 
who tells the Dba in which year 
the death-rate will be normal, 
and in which especially high. 
(2) Christian minister, also ohg- 
gbagbo [//], oh-iyayi [/ •]• 

ohia [/] leather. 

ohia 1 [\] a tree, Celtis ; two kinds : 
C. soyauxii and C. Zenker i\ felled 
by the Binis during harmattan- 
time by setting fire to its base 
(erh-erhe [/%.]). 

ohia 2 ['J pod; ohi-eoee [""%] 
kola pod; ohi-ekoko 
cocoa pod. 

ohidi [ <# J rope used for climbing 
palm trees; c/. hi udl [/]. 

ohie [/] intermediate season, i.e. 
(1) small dry season, and (2) 
cooler interval in dry season. 

ohie [ '] decision in a lawsuit; v. 
bu [/]. 

ohio [/] hole, occurs only with 
gbe ['], and in ohi-ame [" ] 

rain-filled hole in tree; birds 
bathe, and small animals drink 
water there, and can be caught ; 
cf. ams [J, 

ohioro ['\ t ] solitary, used with 
the verb mu [*] only, e.g. of a 
derelict house; v. ioie [ # J. 

ohioOe [*^J a tree, Dialium 
guineense ; used as firewood only. 

Ohioi [_ J Niger; idiom.: ya xwi 
Efohioi (ya long) [...'.J "take 
lock its Niger (i.e. big flood)": 
finish the long argument at that, 
or, with this decision; cf. Ibo 
osimiri [ 1. 

ohoya ['/] empty; ihu w og-ohoya 
o-azekpse (ho [>]) [..;.. J .J] I 
want an empty bottle afterwards. 

ohoye [.*\.] lie; ohoyejta [/%./] 
what I am telling (you) is a lie; 
cf. ohoyoi [,*\J, ohoya [*/]. 

ohoyo 1 [ ] a dance performed 
at second burials and at eho [/]: 
it is danced in a revolving circle, 
the dancers wear only an ebu- 
luku [.."V] and have bells in 
their hands. 

ohoyo 2 [_ J dew on the grass. 

ohoyoi lie; c/. ohoye [."%.]. 

ohoho [/ J whole; intact. 

Ohooe [ _ ] name of a Bini village, 
seat of an Dxwahs [,J t ] shrine. 

oho [\] name of a tree (Entandro- 
phragma?); v. igedu ['"]. 

ohu x [/] a position in the ogwega 
[ "\ t ]-divination (c.o.c.o.) ; of 
Yor. origin? 

ohu 2 [ / ] a tree, Xylopia ( ?) ; very 
straight and smooth ; wood used 
in roofing, as rafters and poles. 

Ohu-oba [ * " ] leader of the " gang " 
ewua ['*%], the people who wake 
the Dba. 

ohu [ t J anger; ohu mu t5s [ #> /] 
"anger is catching me": I am 
getting angry. 


ohua f] sheep. 

ohue [ ] cough; ohue si t3e ["/] 
" cough is drawing me": I must 
cough; wamu^ohue hi w et;-eko re, 
n-oyeya w e ta re "'.".] 
"you (pi.) take the cough out of 
his belly so that he may not take 
it to repeat it" ; this is said when 
a man has died from a disease 
of which coughing was a symp- 
tom ; he is then operated on, and 
a " bag containing a white milky 
substance ' ' is removed from his 
body (from near the liver) lest 
he may suffer from a " cough" 
during his next reincarnation; 
v. eve [..], tolo [.*]. 

ohue [.'] (i) hunter. (2) a sort of 
wasp which builds on mud-walls 
(mud-cells) ; does not sting. 

ohuhu [...] a tall grass, found 
e.g. along the Benin roads; cf 

ihuhu [7]. 

oka [*'] a big tree, Cylicodiscus 
gabunensis; bark used as medi- 
cine against abscess. 

ohukpo [/*] a kind of ocro; re- 
sembles gum. When cooked it 
produces a sticky paste. 

oka 1 [.'] turn, esp. in standing 
as sentry; oka 6e ona xi [././] 
this is my turn ; v. ss 1 [ ' ] , *ae [J ] . 

Oka 2 [.' ] name of a village on the 
Sakpoba Road. 

oka [.'] blame; blessing and 
greeting to somebody serving a 
master: uyuga mi w oka [/*..'%] 
may you not serve and be 
blamed ! (scil. undeservedly) ; as 
opposed to the curse: t-uraga 
mLoka [*\./] may you serve 
and (always) be blamed ! 

okaro, okao [...], [..] first; pi. 
ikaro [...] "the first people", 
the ones who came first ; oka w ona 
xi f ' ] the first (thing) is this ; 

eoi w okao [/..] the first thing; 
cf ke ['], aro [..], okieke [...]. 

oke [/] hill; ok-uwu [/•] "hill of 
death" (why?); name of a pond 
situated in the Erie [/] at the 
Sguae [ J; it contains wells (v. 
uy-egwi [/•]) providing fresh 
water for the Dba's people, 
other water being forbidden to 
them ; cf Yor. oke [ _ ] . 

Oke [.J name of a Bini village. 

Oke n-uhs [.."%.] name of a village 
situated near Uhs [ t J ; it is 
famous for its ubka [...], corn- 

okeke [/ ] false excuses, e.g. to 
escape punishment; v. ze 1 ['], 
oho^e [/\J. 

oki [\] (1) giddiness, dazzle; oki 
ki (or mu [ , ]) os [ ' . / ] 1 ' giddiness 
is dazzling me": I am giddy. 
(2) pirouetting continuously, as 
e.g. in the ohoxo [ ] dance; 
v. obodo [ ], gb-oki'i* J, fi oki 

oki [.*%] a feat said to be per- 
formed at the festival of Osu 
[.'] (at Urhonigbe and Ugo): a 
man who has a special charm is 
struck with matchets without a 
wound being inflicted; cf. Yor. 

oki [Jl 

okieke [ J last; pi. ikieke [...]: 
"the last people, the ones who 
come last", o-okieke [\J at 
last, e.g. in u-okieke okeweri- 
egbe yaxia ["...'...' "] at last 
he went back (o-ok. can also 
stand at the end of the sen- 
tence); cf ke [*], iyeke [...], 
okaj;o [_,]. 

okitiboto [ ] tinea (rashes) on 

oko 1 [/] (1) nest; always with 
a following genitive as in 
ok-ahiaoe [.%.] bird's nest; 


ok-ifaos [/X] ants' nest; 
ok-ahiaue ni ye zayazaya 

LV* '....] that (bird's) nest, 
is rough (ly built). (2) shelter 
in ok-ayg [.%.] a shelter made 
of mats; ok-enwat3e [/J (also 
e-, only as plural?) shelter of 
palm branches; v. eko [ ']. 
oko 2 [/] mate, companion (very 
common as a general address to 
equals); koyo-ko ['*•] usual 
greeting; something like Hullo, 
mate ! oko, lare n-ayaxia [.'.'**'] 
mate, (come and) let's go ! 
oko [ ' . ] a horn (buffalo-, antelope-, 
or ivory-horn) used by witch- 
doctors to call witches when 
going to give them food, 
oko [_] (1) parcel wrapped in a 
large leaf, used for certain pur- 
poses, e.g. sending kola as a 
present. (2) bag, in ok-uos [ m '\] 
salt-bag woven by the Jekri 
people out of sbo [' ], a reed. 
Salt was formerly sold in these 
bags. They are now obsolete. 

okoro [/*] (1) new-born baby. 
(2) prince; name of sons and 
grandsons (iwu [ ] and eys 
[.']) of Oba, Ihama ['/], 
Ezomo ["*], 8hioba [."'] and 
some chiefs. 

oko 1 [/] (1) mould made of mud 
where palm kernels are mashed 
(by treading on them). (2) 
canoe ; ok-erhs [/\ ] ' 'fire-canoe", 
steamer; cf. Yor. oko [•.]. 

oko 2 [/] a tree, F agar a kennedyi. 

oku 1 [ '] sea; cf. Yor. oku [ •], 
Olokfi [*'•]. 

oku 2 [ ' ] a box covered with cloth 
carried in isoto [...]; v, oto [/]. 

oku ['J measuring rope; cf. Yor. 
oku [ J. 

okuku [,/] a method of hair- 
dressing with women: a high 

tuft (on the crown of the head) 
with a knot in the middle; 
raised by means of an uke [/]; 
much worn at eho [/] time. 
okuku w eha [.."'] consists of 
three tufts of hair: one in the 
middle of the head; and one on 
each side. 

okuku [ <t J a disease among 
fowls, called okuku n-ogb-oxoxo 
[ \]" okuku that kills fowls' ' . 

okuo [/\] war; okuegbomoto 
LW] "war does not kill the 
inhabitants": path only known 
to inhabitants of a village and 
used as a means of escape in 
times of war; cf. gbe ['], 
om-otD [.Y]; V. x5 [/]. 

okuta [ ' " ] stone, rock ; okut-osisi 
[/••'] flint ; cf. Yor. okuta [J.]. 

okwekwe [ \ J a tree, Markhamia 

okpa [/] (1) dropping of water, or 
any liquid; bleeding from the 
nose ; okp-ivi [ / ] rain-water 
passing along the stem of the 
coco-palm; okpa also applies to 
the palm leaf tied to the stem 
at an angle and destined to 
direct the water into a pot on 
the earth where it is collected. 
This method of collecting rain- 
water is practised in places 
where water is scarce, e.g. at 
Udo [/] and Enyas [.J, and the 
coco-nut palm gives most and 
the best water ; ya mu eCi da y- 
okp-ivi (da [J]) U.r\..\] go 
and take something to direct 
(scil. the water) to the drain of 
the coco-palm! (2) a worm (?) 
living on trees which occasion- 
ally emits some liquid. 

okpa [\] way where something is 
passing: (1) of game; okp- 
af aoe ["•.]" track of animals " ; 


okpa na la gbe ['//'] this 
game-track is well frequented 
("passed"). (2) of wind; okp- 
shoho [ " \ J a windy spot ; ab- 
owa na y-okp-shoho [.'*." \ J this 
house is built (bo [ ' ]) on a windy 
spot (different from okp-ehoho 
[/>.], v. okpe [/]). 

okpaya [, # J a tree, Pentaclethra 
macrophylla; mortars are made 
out of the wood. The F.D. list 
has, besides, okpay-sze 
"river-okpaya", Calpocalyx bre- 

okpe [/] big, large, great; okp- 
erha [/*] a big tree; okp-shoho 
[."}.] " great wind": storm, 
tornado; okp-ese [ '\] a big 
present; okp-sos [/\] an im- 
portant lawsuit matter; okp-szo 
[ . " ] a big law-suit ; okp-iyo [ ' ' ] 
a large amount of money, a 
heavy fine; okp-ows [/Y] "big 
foot": walking with iegs wide 
apart; swagger; okp-oxuo [/\] 
a "big", i.e. rich, woman; okp- 
Dta [/•] "big talk": boasting, 
hence: okp-otagb-unu [.'*•.] a 
"big talk kills mouth": a 
boaster who does not consider 
his words; okp-oua [ m '\] a 
" big", i.e. rich, important, man; 
okp-unu [/•] "big mouth" (?); 
usually translated by "word of 
mouth": an utterance that is 
not meant seriously, not out of 
one's own heart ; also, boasting. 

okpe [*J a flute made from a 
Calabash played by villagers at 
home and when working at the 
Sguae [.J. 

okpe [ § J wine-tapper. 

okpetus [ /] a secret ceremony 
performed every morning and 
evening at the Sguae [ _], about 
the time of ugi-erh-oba [ m ]; 

in former times every un- 
authorised witness of it was 
killed, later heavily fined (v. 

uboa [/.]). 

okpia (1) man; okpi-oxuo 

L.\] " woman's man": hen- 
pecked husband. (2) male; 
ooox-okpia [ t \J] boy. 

okpoto [ /] toad. 

okpo 1 [f] dog (male). 

okpo 2 [ / ] ridge-beam of roof. 

okpooie something like 

"drumming while others are 
sleeping", "troubled sleep on 
account of dances going on 
during the night" (occurs in a 
proverb); cf kpe [J], oie [J], 

ola [ . J menorrhoea. 

oladodo ["/] uncircumcised man. 

oleya [" ] prisoner; cf. la ['](?), 
eya ['/]; cf. Yor. elenwo [-'J. 

Oliha [* \ ] (1) a chief, first in rank 
at the Uzama [/J. (2) a chief 
of the Ogiatis [_*], living in his 
quarter. Of Yoruba origin. 

olika [ ' " ] (1) a tree (olika n-erha 
[*'*•]); its bark and roots, 
when ground and applied to 
the skin cure era ["] "gan- 
glion". (2) a creeper (olika n-iri 
["/•]); its roots are used in 
curing a disease called "black- 
tongue". (3) condensed, es- 
sential, e.g. in olik-£t3e a 
word in which the essentials of 
a situation or opinion are con- 
densed; essence of a statement 
as opposed to unnecessary 

olima [/V.] file; c/. Port. lima, 
olimehi ["/] a kind of red yam; 

swells considerably in cooking. 
Olisakeji [...'.] title used in 

addressing the Dba when he 

wears a certain dress ; from Yor. 

orija keji " tne second 


god" ; it is doubtful whether the 
expression is generally used by 
Bini people, 
olizaizai ["/J] smartness, swift- 
ness; oo-olizaizai no-y-okpia na 

[. '//'. J.] " a smart man he 
is, (namely) this man"; cf. 
zaizai [_]. 
Olode [" *] a women's idol at erie 
[/], constructed with a living 
ixioi ["J with a heap of mud 
round the base like the otoe [ t J 
and inyato [...]; it reveals any- 
thing forbidden that may hap- 
pen. Its priest is the senior wife 
of the household; of Yoruba 

olode [ #># ] sewing needle ; cf. la [ ' ], 
ode [/]. 

olodo [ " J door-frame. 

ologu [' * * ] " war-lord ", a praise- 
name for the Oba; cf. Yor. 
ologu [•*•]. 

ologbo [ " ] cat ; cf. Yor. ologbo 

oloi [ ] (pi. iloi) Oba's wife; cf. 
Yor. olori [•*.]; v. unuyise [.'*.]. 

Oloku [ " * ] (i) name of the Ethiope 
River the source of which is 
near Umutu (Warri Province), 
and the Benin River. (2) the sea. 
(3) " owner of the sea"; a god 
that gives wealth and many 
children; has many women as 
his priests and is much wor- 
shipped by women; cf. Yor. 
Oloku [•'•]; v. orhue [.J. 

olose [ ' * ] a snake, mainly of 
yellow or reddish colour, said to 
be always accompanied by red 
ants ; said to be very poisonous, 
but biting seldom; its skin is 
worn as a belt; v. enye [/]. 

olotu ["\J (1) " headman" of a 
working gang; (2) headman of 
an age group, such as the iyele 

[ . ] or iroyae [...]. (3) president 
of a society or "club"; cf. Yor. 
formations with ol-. 
ob [*'] grind-stone; cf. Yor. 
ob [.•]. 

obkoCe ["' ] only in obkoo-eho 
[*".'] windpipe and obkoo- 
5(u)rhu ["V.] a big heron- 
like bird with a long neck; cf. 
urhu [.J. 

obkpa ["•] policeman; cf. Yor. 

obkpa [-V3- 
olufere [*' ] a whistle; cf. Yor. 
fere [..].*' 

olugbegbe [" J (also oligbegbe) 

oluku [ / ] young one (of animals) ; 
oluku w esi [./..] young pigs; 
oluku ewe [ "*] young goats; 
oluku ohua [.'/**] lambs. 

oma [\] a large tree, Cordii 
millenii; wood used for planks. 

ome [ * ' ] unopened palm branches 
tied as a fringe over a village- 
gate or the gate of the shrine of 
a deity ; renewed at each annual 
sacrifice and also used as fringes 
in masquerade-dancers' dress ; 
yagb-ome re n-ata y-aru w ebo 

[J "''..".J "g° an d cut ome 
and let us go and spread them 

(ta [']) over (the) shrine ! " 

ome [ b J sorrow, affliction, such as 

expressed by a certain click; cf. 

me [']. 

omi ['*] a kind of white yam; v. 

ema 2 [ m J . 
omiaoeze ["\J iguana; unyeho 

u-omiai3eze [. *••*.] "y ou are 
deaf like the iguana", i.e. you 
hear faint sounds, but not loud 
ones; cf. eze [_]. 

ominigie [ ] class of people who 

possess no titles ; cf. egie [ . J . 

ominigba [ ] another expres- 
sion for ogwega . ] not so much 



in use; said to be preferably 
used by masters (oka [ /]) of 
the art of ogwega-divination. 
omu [\] a tree, Entandrophrag- 
ma candollei; similar to ekpiro 


omuhe beginning; cf. mu i 

['I he [J]. 

omumu i [ ### ] soldier-ant. 

omumu 2 [ . ] a snake believed to 
have two heads. 

omunya (i) somebody or 

something put on top. (2) seventh 
innings at ayo ['J game; cf. 
mu 1 [*], nya [/]. 

ona[/] sketch, pattern. 

oni [.J cold weather ; oni fi [ ' ] 
it is cold; oni fi (or, bu) gbe 
[./•] it is very cold; oni gbe oe 
[.. /] "cold is killing me" : I am 
. feeling cold. 

onikekeze ['V.'] a headgear of 
the Dba, without fringes, L.R. 
p. 23; v. ede ["]. 

onurho [.^.] gateway, passage of 
gate ; onurh-ore [ / • •] outer com- 
pound gate leading to street; 
gate in house leading to street; 
onurh-iyek-owa [.**•/] gate 
leading to the backyard. 

onusee [ ' " ] a kind of white yam 
that has many leaves; v. ema 2 

onwe [..] sun (in the sky) ; onw- 
°ta [ . S . ] evening sun (from the 
late afternoon); v. ove [ # J. 

onwi [ # . ] cow (special term* f or the 
female/while emila [*'/] is a 
generic name). 

[ Y ] carpenter, nowadays 
ekabita [J\] is used generally, 
and onwina denotes the Dba's 
carpenters only; it also occurs 
in the name of the quarter Iduu- 
onwina [."/] at Benin City; cf. 
nwma \ . 

onwo [*J (1) (wild) bee; v. uvtt 
[/]. (2) wax; v. alsoipapa J. 
(3) honey. 

onwonwo [ _ J toucan. 

ony aya [* ' ] trouble ; cf. ny aya [ / ] . 

onyoue [" ] (1) slice; piece, e.g. of 
fruit like kola when broken into 
parts; onyoo-okpa [""] one 
piece. (2) (one) side e.g. of the 
road, or of a piece of cloth. 

°P e [ . ] calabash used for drinking 
palm wine; oval iron arrow- 

ora [ J stain; spot. 

ore [ J CO acquaintances (all the 
people a man knows); ooo^ore 
gbe (Oe [J]) [.//] he has many 
acquaintances. (This meaning 
given by A. was contested by 
Ed., who wanted to translate 
' * acquaintances " by iho [ ' ] 
only. He gave the following 
meaning for ore.) (2) the present 
generation; ore na w irii w eCi ese 
fo [ 'J'. . . . V.] " this generation 

never does anything well", 
ore [ '] pillar. 

ori aca [...] bile; cf. re 1 [']. 

oriema [...] a shrub; cf. re 1 ['], 
ema [.J. 

orieoe(e) kola-nut holder; 

v. L.R. p. 243. 

orioxo [/•] an old expression for 
okpehoho [/y], efi [.J; not 
much in use nowadays. 

oriri [..J electric eel ; its head is 
used as a "medicine" in wrest- 
ling: makes the wrestler in- 
vulnerable and untouchable. 

oruae* [.\] (1) (any) relative-in- 
law; (2) both parties of an agree- 
ment for taking care of a cow, 
goat, or fowl, call each other 
oruae; v. nwanie [/]. 

orhio [/] (1) the living strength 
of a man; it is said to sit on 




ekokodu [**%.] (the heart) during 
one's lifetime. When a man dies, 
orhio [ / ] flies away and attaches 
itself to the wall like a flying 
animal, thus it listens to all that 
is said about the deceased and 
to the prayers given for his next 
life (e.g. when he has been 
poisoned, that it may not be 
repeated, and looks at the 
sacrifices offered, the dances 
round the ukpafi [ / J of the 
room in which the deceased is 
lying, and the oaths sworn by 
his wives. Only when the body 
is taken to be buried, does the 
orhio leave the house. It goes to 
efioi [/J and, together with the 
man's shi [ ] whom it meets 
there, it goes to Osa [ ># ] to 
"render account". (These be- 
liefs are said to be no longer 
strong nowadays.) When a man 
is ill, witches may come and 
steal his orhi5 [/]. They then 
transform it at their meeting 
into an animal which they kill 

and eat. The man whose orhio 
[ ] has been stolen and killed 
in this way must die. He lies on 
his bed and is delirious (" talking 

at randon"), the white of his 
eye appears, etc. A man in this 
condition can, however, tell the 
name of the witch when a certain 
strong charm is applied. But 
the orhio [/] of such a man is 
still supposed to go to efiCi 
[.'.], so that the stolen "object" 
apparently is nothing but the 
victim's strength to live; orhio- 
fe rie [J J] "his strength to 
live is going away " : he is about 
to die (o. fo [\\ "is finished" is 
also said). (2) zest, power to do 
something; orhio ni JL 

" power escaped (lit. * capsized 1 ?) 
him": he is tired (also etl fu w ee 
[ 'J] "power was finished in 
him"); orhio-fg tl fua [J.'J] 
"his power has flown away": 
he has lost heart (when faced 
with a big task to be done ; also 
orhio ni w §). (3) soul (in the 
Christian sense) ; omi-orhio-f e fa 
o-ob-oruxo [ t */ ,,,\J] he saved 
his soul from sin. (4) Orhio 
N-ohua-fg [..V.] (Bibl.) the 
Holy Ghost, 
orhioni [ ' ] laziness; oi5-6rhioni 

[.* r ] a iazy man; cf. orhi5 [/], 
ni 1 [*]. 

Orhiooo [\ J a river, usually called 

orhooie [ ] insult. 

orhoxwa [ ] a staff ca. 6 feet 
high used by old men when 
walking; igb-orhoxwa y-ojj-igbo 
[.;../*] I hit his leg ("calf") 
with my stick; v. ukpokpo [\ J. 

orho [ ] (1) rainy season. (2) 
harvest time ; orha w aye na, inya^ 
iyi^ [../.;**/.] we are in the 

harvest time now, yams are not 
dear. (3) new (of field fruits); 
cf. rho VI 
orhooe [*\ J (1) star; orhooe 
n-uxut3u [' V*..] star of the sky; 
ubaC-orhooe [.'*>.] light of stars. 
(2) a big brown beetle flying at 
night; has a black head with 
white markings ; it is believed to 
be a fallen star expelled from 
the sky. 

orhooe the Grey-breasted 

Helmet-Guinea-Fowl (or Bush- 
Fowl) ; orhooe n-okpolo ['"%., /] 
a big guinea-fowl. 

orhu 1 [/] a musical instrument, 
probably some kind of horn, 
with a big mouth; bass; v. 

orhu 2 [/] an ugie [ # J at which 
those .dead people who had no 
children, or whose children are 
still too young, are "given 
food", i.e. a sacrifice, by the 
Dba. The food has been prepared 
by the Dba's mother (Iyoba 
['**]), and after the sacrifice 
everybody comes to eat from 
the food. The igbaniherha [.../] 
perform their feat at this ugie. 
It takes place when everybody 
has finished eho [/], the annual 
ancestral sacrifice. 

Orhua [ J a village on the Bini- 
Ora boundary, near the source 
of the river Orhiooo [' ]. 

orhue [_] chalk found at the 
river side ; symbol of luck ; also 
symbol of the Dba in the 
following idioms: orhue bufu 
[..^.] "the chalk is broken": 
the Dba is dead (used at the 
official announcement of his 
death by the lyase, three years 
after the actual death; wu may 
not be used); oto ri w orhue 
[..".] "the earth has eaten 
chalk " : the Dba has been buried 
(after three years). At every 
god's shrine there is chalk to be 
found, and it is widely used for 
making marks on face, chest, 
and arms as a sign of luck, as 
well as for " rubbing' ' shrines of 
gods, and for drawing patterns 
on every shrine before sacri- 
ficing (wuo [J], wu-orhue [/ J). 
Oloku ['*'], the god of the sea 
and of wealth, is supposed to 
have brought it. The Dba is 
believed to eat chalk. Chalk 
is used in sacrifices and at 

orhuftanye. [.*,'] guest; "stranger 
in the house". 

ore [ ' * ] (also orere) (i) town ; of- 

edo [*V] or [ '] Benin City; 
ot-ogiso ["/] "town of Ogiso 
[_']": bright side of a cloud 
(small children are told that 
Ogiso 's town is of a similar 
beauty); or-egwi [*'*] "town of 
tortoise": dark and ragged side 
of cloud (told to small children, 
probably because it is rough like 
the shell of a tortoise) . (2) street. 
(3) outside (the house). 

°t e te a certain animal, 

roots corn out a few days after 
it is sown ; it is believed to pray 
to God by standing on its hind 
legs and rubbing its fore-legs ; a 
hunter shooting at it at this 
moment is supposed to miss it. 

°t* [* * ] corncake (usually wrapped 
in a big leaf) ; oriole [ " ' . ] a ball 
of mud with a hole at the top 
representing a servant of Df omila 
[/..], the god of palm kernels 
and divination. 

oriwo [*\] a shrub, "bitter-leaf", 
Vernonia amygdalina ; leaf used 
in a soup, v. unwooe [ ] ; opw- 
eni ["••] (eni [/] "elephant") 
a tree, Vernonia conferta\ bark 
used in the preparation of a 
soup; v. unwooE [...]. 

oro [/] a coral bead hat, pointed 
in the middle, worn by the Dba 
and EzomD [*"]; some other 
chiefs (Osua [\] and Dsa [\]) 
substitute a woven hat (from 
the urua [_] palm) for it; the 
latter wear the oro every time 
they go to the 8guae [ _ ] . 

°t° [ .] secret practices (referring 
e.g. to such practices in witch- 
craft, the worship of gods, ugie 
[_], and to the "bull-roaring" 
as practised by the Dvia [/]- 
society); cf. Yor. oro [• ]. 



oroboto [ . . / ] hippopotamus (more 
used than eni ame [ * ]) ; cf. Jekri 

otobo [...](?). 

°t°y° [ . . . ] muddy pools, mud on 
the road, "potto-potto ; oroyo 
r-ode [ _ / • ] the road is muddy ; 

otoho [,~V] idleness (only as a 
genitive following ova. [."%]). 

otoka [,/] finger-ring (formerly 
made of brass, bone, kernel (?), 
iron and lead; now mostly of 
silver); cf. Yor. oruka [.../]. 

oroks [_ J horse- or cow-tail; 
handle sewn with leather; as 
emblem of Ifa priests (ob-ofo- 
mila [/*..]); v. iyoyo [...]. 

[.'] ( a lso oruru [/']) thread; 
oru na ye tiyitiyi [/.*....] this 
thread is twisted; cotton; oru J 
ru w ebo [/"*] a kind of shrub 
used to demarcate boundaries; 
oruru^oxa [.""] seed of the 
cotton tree. 

°r u tV] a l arva that lives in the 
tapping-cut of palm trees (udi 
L']or ogD [..]). 

orugburu [./%.] a stone (?) found 
in the stomach, mainly of cows, 
formed by their food; this is 
believed to enable cows to eat 
anything, and is accordingly 
used as an antidote to poison. 

oruhu [.*%.] a position in the og- 
wsga [ t ]-divination (o.o.c.c.) ; 
of Yor. origin? 

oruxo [,,J] wrongdoing, wicked- 
ness; cf. fU ['], xo [J]. 

ofifi [*/] a creeper, similar to 
eb-Dd5d5 [.'•*]: probably Vitex 

ofit3i [/.] corpse; cf. sfiui [/J; v. 
iku [/]. 

ofioiyuyu [\.\.] a tree, Antho- 
cleista; has very broad leaves; 


ofooe [ ' ] married state; cf. 
fooe [/]. 

ofuuu [' J avocado-pear, Pachy- 
lobus edulis; another sort (list 
of Forestry Dept.): ofuo-ezs 
["%.] "river-pear" Pachylobus 
barter i\ yet another sort is: 
ofuo-uxioxio [ " "\ . ] . 

osa [/] debt; v. ru [*], re 1 ['], 

Osa [ # J (1) the Bini high god, 
creator of the world ; his worship 
seems to have developed mostly 
since the times of the Oba £sigie 
['•J; he has shrines and priests 
in Benin City only; the cult 
was stated to be a later out- 
come of the early Portuguese 
missionary activity developed 
after the departure of the Euro- 
pean missionaries. The cross 
plays a role in the cult: the 
Osa [,.] shrine at Akpakpava 
[..%.] street contains a cross 
and a kind of rosary, the state 
sword of the Dba (ada ["]) that 
is used when he goes to ar> 
osa [/\.], the Osa shrine, was 
said to bear a cross, and the 
badges worn by participants in 
the new yam fast (agwe f # J) 
which are distributed to them by 
the oh-5sa [."%.], the Osa priest, 
are in the shape of a cross. The 
three shrines in Benin City were 
said to stand on the sites of 
early Portuguese chapels. Osa 
is often called Osanobua [ m ' \] 9 
ErhaCosa [\\ J, " godfather", 
and has also the names Oyodua 
[•.%], Ododua [*>M(?), Udazi, 
[VJ, and Itebite [/%*], which 
have been taken over by Chris- 
tian translators. Many names 
containing the word Osa [ J v 
seem to be used by Christians 

and pagans alike, e.g. Osagi- 
a S b3 [..'.J "god sent to the 
world ' ' ; viz. me ; Osayius [.,/'•] 
"god created me"; Osafs-xoe 
[ . J J . ] " God knows the mind " ; 
Igbln-osa [,/\J "I shelter 
with God". These names are 
now the only ones used by 
Christians. A sign representing 
Osa [.J is the Osagbaye [ / ], 
a white cloth on a "bamboo" 
pole in the compound; not 
everyone has it. The meaning 
of Osagbaye is doubtful. (2) God 
in the Christian sense; cf Yor. 

? ri J a [ . . . ] ( an old form of Osa 
is Oisa, Ofisa). 

ose 1 [/] beauty; cf. mu 1 [']. 

ose 2 [ '] a position in the ogwsga 

[.*%.] -divination (o.c.o.c); of 

Yor. origin? 

ose X e [...] support, backing up 
(in a fight, or in any trouble) ; 
osii3i w oseye ne [. / \ /\] he back- 
ed him up. 

osele [_*] rope or tree put up 
horizontally seven or eight feet 
high as a rack for drying corn ; 
also oseloka [,/J "corn-osele". 

osse ['J witness; v, ss 1 [']. 

osiba [_] act of bowing and 
greeting with folded hands as 
sign of acknowledgment to a 
skilled dancer after his per- 

osiko [ t / ] round part of a log cut 
off in the process of squaring it, 
"score" (expression used in 
timber work) ; cf. Engl, score; 
igbosiko[...J; v. gbe 1 ['].. 

osisi ['*'] gun; osisi n-agbeva 
[*7\ # .] double barrelled gun; 
cf. Ibo osisi ["•] "tree, stick". 

ositua [..J a tree, Baphia pu- 

oso [/] lump; a whole piece; 

os-orhue [^\,] lump of chalk; 
osu w inya [/*•] a (whole) yam; 
osu w oka [/\] a (whole) cob of 
corn (maize); v. osovz [/ ] (a 
piece, but not one whole). 

Osodi [' J a chief, representative 
of the Oba's dead father who, as 
such, gives the Dba advice, esp. 
about the treatment of his wives 
who may lay complaints before 
him. He is a member of the Ibiwe 
[.Y] -society. The Dba must 
give him everything he wants, 
but at his death his property 
goes to the Oba. Formerly he 
was elected by the oracle, now- 
adays it is a question of money. 
Of Yoruba origin ; a title in Lagos 
being OJodi [...]. 

Osoyo [.V] (1) name of a river 
near Uhs [ # J, (2) name of a 
Bini deity (an ih§ 

osorhue [_'] the biggest kind of 
hedgehog or porcupine. 

osooe [/J a piece of something 
(but not one whole) ; oso\3-ukp5 
[ / \ .] a rag (of cloth) ; osoo-inya 
[//] a piece of yam (cut off). 

Osu [ / ] the power active in leaves 
and herbs, i.e. in medicines and 
charms. The Osu [/] doctors 
are considered to be very good 
at curing (and inflicting) dis- 
eases and at playing magic 
tricks. They are even said to 
have healed some lepers. Every 
household also has its own Osu 
[/] shrine; v. iku owaise 
L.l ewawa [...]. 

Osua [ J title of a chief, priest of 
a royal god (either Unwe ["] or 
Ota [*.]); he had to eat human 
flesh in the old days; v. Osa [*J. 

osuako t ] incisors ; cf. ako [ # ] . 

osugba [***] round loaf of yam- 
fufu; used by the Oba's family as 


well as the Ezomo's [""] and 
many other families when sacri- 
ficing to their ehi [ # J and 
ancestors; also called osugb- 

osuyu [ _ J trouble, worry, caused 
e.g. by magic or by intrigues. 
• Osuma [*/] a chief, fourth in rank 
of the Eyaeoo N-ogbe [../ ]. 

osumare [ ] fabulous shining 

stone said to be spit out at 
night time by pythons and vipers 
in order to attract animals by 
its light. It is believed to 
multiply the power of charms; 
cf. Yor. ojumare [.,..]• 

osu3b5 [ # V] a tree, Kigelia 
africana (?) ; farmers obtain from 
it a charm which promotes the 
growth of yams; cf. io [J]. 

osuru [...] (preceded by u-) at 
once ; immediately ; mostly used 
of knocking down in a wrestling 
match, or of drinking; Y£<*-ehia 
o-osuru (da [']) [*•/..] do not 
drink all at once ! oma-f e o-osuru 
(ma [J]) [J.\.] he knocked 
him down in a moment. 

osusu [ ### ] pointed hair-tuft (with 
a round base) worn by common- 
ers serving the Oba. If not done 
correctly, it is called akegbe 
[/*] (e.g. if beginning too high 
on the head and providing too 
small a circle as base); v. 
ugw-akpata [,""]. 

ota [ ] evening ; ota n-sr£ yade 

[ . .S . V] co me tonight ! 
oti [/]' leprosy; oti n-ufl£ [./\] 
* 1 salt-leprosy " : " melts like 
salt " ; attacks nose, fingers, and 
toes; incurable; exudes liquid 

otis ["] a fruit tree, Chryso- 
phyllum albidum. The F.D. list 
also knows otig ogi-orio "otig of 


the chief of Oris" as Ochro- 
carpus africanus which was not 
known as a special tree by the 
informant; there are many otie 
at Orio. The meaning of otis ware 
[".'] (F.D. List: Ochrocarpus 
africanus) could only be: "are 
you eating oti§? " It does not 
seem to be a special name or sort 
of oti£. oti-em£ [ " " \] " monkey- 
otig": a tree, Panda oleosa. 
otiyiri [.*."] an idiomatic expres- 
sion for enys [ ' ] ; cf. tiyi [ ' ] . 
otiti [7] fame; c/. titi [/]. ' 
otohio [,"%,] trap ; catches animals 

by their feet. 
°t°t° [.. ] diarrhoea; curse: otof- 
ogb-u£ [ # .\*\] may diarrhoea 
kill you ! * w 

oto [ '] collective name for the 
things carried in a procession 
taking place at the second 
burial (v. isoto [...]); they con- 
sist of (1) a box (oku [/]) with 
its lid open, but tightly covered 
with white- cloth so that no 
opening is visible ; brass figures 
of animals (e.g. tortoise, leopard, 
frog, fowl, fish, snake) are tied to 
the cloth ; on the top of oku a 
brass leaf in the shape of a 
feather, about a foot long, is 
fastened, as well as brass, wooden 
and ivory figures e.g. of human 
beings; (2) a cow or goat, 
yams, a calabash of oil, a mat, 
a salt-bag (ekp-uoe [*%]), given 
by the sons of the deceased to 
their sib (egbse [,\]) ; v. ako [/]. 

otD [..] c f- otoe [..]; this form is 
used after some verbs to in- 
dicate a downward motion, e.g. 
in gb-oto (gbe if]) ['J, s-oto (ss 1 
[ ]) [ .]» and mi-oto (mi£ [']) 
["J; idiom.: s-oto s-uxmm 
[.*..] "reach ground reach 

above": all over; om-ukp5 gu- 
egbe s-ofc> s-uxut>u (gue [J]) 
r ' ' J he covered himself 
all over with a cloth (when 
going to sleep). Redupl. ototo 
[ ■y] means (a) bottom of a 
vessel: otot-ukpu [.*>.] the bot- 
tom of the glass (inside); (b) 
dregs: otot-anyo [/'•] the dregs 
of palm-wine; (c) under: otot- 
erha [.'*•] under the tree. If 
motion is implied instead of rest, 
ototo is used with the verbs yi [ ' ] 
or rie [J], yo [']: gi-a tota y- 
otot-erhana[ J\ ] let us sit 
down under this tree! ifa gwa 
ri-otot-ez£ [ Y . / V . ] they are 
pulling (rowing) down stream; 
ifa gwa y-otot-eze (yo) [Y/\.] 
they have rowed downstream 
(and are back again), 
otoe [..] (i) earth; ground; soil; 
ot-iku [.%.] spot on which 
refuse is thrown; dust heap. 
(2) the Ground, Earth, as a 
deity. If -all the gods are 
against a man, except the Earth, 
he "will not quickly die". Its 
shrine is the inyato [ ## J. When 
a suicide has taken place the 
"owners of the ground 1 ', i.e. the 
ancient owners of the ground on 
which the village is built, must 
be called for pacification. A pay- 
ment is made to them for the 
sacrifice, whereupon everybody 
must go inside his house, and 
they perform the sacrifice, ac- 
companied by smil-Dvia ['/ ] 
(bull-roaring). After the sacri- 
fice, the rope is cut and the 
corpse buried. (Suicides are 
supposed to go to efio-imawu 
[/'..] or iduO-Imawu [ / ' , . ] ' ' the 
Underworld, or quarter, of the 
suicides", where they are said 


to be kept in chains.) (3) bottom 
(e.g. of a vessel) ; idiom. : oto-ibie 
[/'*] "the bottom of the en- 
trails": the bottom of one's 
heart (as opposed to okp-unu 
[.*'] "by word of mouth": not 
quite sincerely) ; iwahu w £o-5f e 
s-oto-ibie (ss [']) ['\J,y ] 
I like him thoroughly (not 
partially), from the bottom of 
my heart. (4) floor (of a room, 
in comparison with ukpo [*J, 
the mud-niches) in oto-wa [.**]; 
v. ikpawe [_ J (in general use, 
but mainly used of the floor 
round the ukpafe [/] in the 
ikfl's [.*%]). (5) reason (for 
something); oto-fe 00 n-unaxa 
o-erio \J m ," ' J] lit. "what is 
its reason that you say so?" 
oto-te n-ifS. natu w ee e^-ona xi 

[...'.*'\. .'] Kt. "the reason of 
it that they did it, is this": is 
why they did it; cf. oto [ # J, 
otu [\] a tree, Cleistopholis 

otu [ # J (1) age-group, generation ; 
v. eoi [.M, iroyae [...], eyele 
[*..]* edi5 [/]. (2) everybody 
who is about three years older 
or younger than any individual, 
is considered as being of his otu, 
bodily strength being the decid- 
ing factor; this not institution- 
alized idea of otu prevails in 
apportioning communal tasks to 
groups of men, in selecting 
partners for wrestling matches, 
etc. (3) working-gang, v. olotu 
PU; c/.Ibo, Jekri otu [.J. 
otua [**\] a small tree, Baphia 
nitida ; used in purification cere- 
monies ; seven leaves of it pinned 
together are also used as sub- 
stitute of one's Osu [/] shrine 
on travels. 


otu£ [/] salutation; otu-owie 

[/"•] morning salutation (i.e. 

the general term, not a formula) ; 

cf. tus [*]. 
ovab [ %mt ] a tree, Trichilia heude- 

lotii. The F.D. list has ogi-ovalo. 
ove [ ] sunshine; ove de ro [.."] 

"sun has fallen hidden itself": 

the sun has hidden behind the 

clouds; ov§ nya re [ . / '] the sun 

has risen ; v. onwe [ # J. 
ovia[ J grumbling; cf. via [J], 
OvofaCs name of the Dba 

who reigned until the Expedition 

in 1897. 
oca 1 [*J spleen; v. ude [\]. 
ooa 2 [' ] a hard swelling found 

e.g. in cases of ou-iy-abs [.'"]. 
ooamE [."%.] thirst ; ooame gbe oe 

[.%./] I am thirsty. 
ot>e [/] sleep; cf. vis [J], 
owe ['J trunk (of elephant); 00- 

eni [ - V] elephant's trunk; cf. 

Jekri owere [...]. 
ousoe 1 [ # J wooden spade ; rhi- 

ooeoe re n-aya z-eks na (ze [']) 

[...*..,/.]" bring a spade come 
that we may take (it) to collect 
this mud" (for house-building). 
od£D£ 2 [ ] centipede ; has a 
forked tail; its sting is very 

ooexe [ V . ] a timber tree, Triplo- 
chiton scleroxylon; grows quickly; 
its light wood is used for 
packing-cases and ceiling-board ; 
"obeke" "white-wood". 

ot >i [.*] pl« i- (1) child (used with 
genitives and pronouns) ; ooi oe 
[..*]• my child; oui w erha [/'*] 
brother (or sister) by the same 
father; oo-iye [.'*] brother (or 
sister) by the same mother; 
ooi w erh-oo-iye [.*"'*] brother 
(or sister) by the same father 
and mother; otn^ogie [/ # J a 

ruler's child; oui oCa [/ *\] "son 
of a person": a freeborn man. 
(2) young of an animal; ooi w 
Emila [."/] calf; ooi w oxoxo 
[."*.] chicken. (3) young plant ; 
ooi w erha [ /*•] young sapling 
(also shrub). (4) member of 
tribe or group within the society ; 
ooi w aleke [.'.,.] unmarried girl 
of marriageable age. oui w £do 
[/"•] Biniman. k>i w ore,[ ' Jpl., 
young generation (up to about 
thirty years of age). ooi w otu 
[."..] member of a band, or 
society; pi. ioi w otu also denotes 
servants living outside the house 
(where they are serving), so that 
e.g. ioi w otu erha (3e [/*••/] 
usually means "the servants 
of my father". (5) men of a 
certain social status or calling, 
oo-iyokuo [,\. J "son of cam- 
paign": warrior; hence: 00- 
iyoku-Ekristi [.**./.] "warrior 
of Christ", and 00-iyoku-Osa- 
lobua [/'.,/>] "warrior of 
God": member of the Salvation 
Army. (These terms stand for 
the organisation when in the 
plural .) ooi w ogue [ . " \ ] («) " son 
of poverty": a poor man, 
(b) "poverty", in ooi w ogue Ce 
[ 7 ] " my poverty ". (6) small, 
short, in ooi w ab£ [ "] pen-knife 
(but oo-iy-ab£ [.'"] "brother 
of knife'*: muscle abscess or 
filaria); ooi^axe [."*] a small 
pot; ooi^Eho [/*'] a "small 
voice'' like that of a girl (more 
rarely ooi w urhu [.*..]) ; ooi w £gbo 
xerhe [.*'*"] a short way 
(" space ") ; ooi w £d£ xerhe [/"*••] 
a short time. (7) special ex- 
pressions: ot)i w akota [.".,] dog, 
v. ekita [**.], awa [/]; ot)i w 
alums [/*..] a small bird with a 

little red on its tail ; larger than 
as8S£ [ 7 ] ; ooi w aro [ / # J pupil of 
the eye ; ooi w arai3s [ / * \ ] uvula ; 
oui w ax-owe [.">.] "little pot 
(i.e. bulge) of foot" : (pi.) ioi w awa 
n-eha [.'TV] "the three young 
dogs": the belt of Orion 
(N.W.Th.); oo-iwu [ # %J one of 
the tribal marks, stretching on 
the left side from under the 
mastix across the ribs to be- 
neath the navel; not marked in 
the Dba's family; ooi w odo [/"] 
"son of mortar": pestle; ori w 
ogie ku£ ["J J] "the son of a 
ruler does not set fire" because 
its use as firewood is taboo to 
all descendants of ogies; a tree; 
Maesopsis eminnii; its wood 
burns very badly and in a con- 
cealed way; a purgative is 
obtained from the bark; ooi w o- 
gierhaooto [/V.\] "a ruler's 
son does not touch the ground" ; 
itri w onudo [.".*] (pi.) tribal 
marks on the cheeks: ovals 
standing upright, not very long; 
ioi w ov§ [/.J (pi.) "sons of the 
sun": small butterflies flying in 
swarms, mostly of one colour 
only; ooi w ududu [/..J a ball 
kept by ghosts in the palm of 
the hand; whatever it touches 
dies before daybreak; ooi w 
ukwoki w uguaw£ [. \ ] knee- 
cap; ooi w ukp5 [/. J a substitute 
for a loin-cloth (ebuluku [ . ,"Y ] 
or abaoute [...']), tied with a 
strip of cloth serving as belt 
(oza [.']); also shawl covering 
shoulders; ooi w ufuou [/"J im- 
plement in the shape of a 
"dumb-bell", used in grinding 
pepper on uro [.J; cf. It)i w eze 
[/•J; v. omo [/]. 
ooiaxe [...] a timber tree, Sarco- 



cephalus esculentus; though a 
deciduous tree, it is never quite 

ovivi [ t J ] idiomatic for arhuaro 

[.\.] "blind man", 
ooiuie [*/] a snake, "black mam- 

ba"; spits; poisonous; believed 

to crow like a cock; v. znyz [/]; 

cf. Jekri obibi [/ ]. 
ovuxo [/ ] he-goat; cf. Yor. 

obuko [/•]. 

ot3a [/] measuring implement 
(rope, tape, etc.) ; oua na mata se 

this measure is not 
long enough; cf. 6a [J ]. 

oCe [\] a small tree, Combretum 

owa [ " ] market-stall (a palm- or 
bamboo-shed) . 

owa [ m ' ] a house ; a roofed place ; 
ow-ame [.%;] water-tank; ow- 
ebe [ / • ] " book-house ' ' : school ; 
ow-egbagbo [//] "faith-house " : 
church (also ow-iyayi [.'••], v. 
esosi [.%.]); ow-ehe [ / • ] room in 
which women live secluded 
during menstruation (at od- 
eri£); ow-ek§ [ J house built 
of mud; ow-sbo "god's 
house": house containing the 
shrine of a god; temple (ow- 
ing [/ \ ] is not used) ; ow-Egbima 
[/..] house built of cane and 
plastered over with mud (Jekri 
type); ow-fiki [ # \] shop (v. 
esabu .[/%.], owa [ ]) ; ow-ezd 
[/'] Native Court building; 
ow-iku "(roofed) dust- 

bin", v. ot-iku [/Y] "a place 
where refuse is thrown"; ow-isa 
[/%.] latrine, better egb-owa 
[.*']; ow-iwowo [/"] shack 
built of planks. 

owete [./] old age; only in 
a song: uyari^oba, uyuri^owere 
[..""....'] "when you reign 

as Oba, you must attain (eat) 
old age" and in odiowere [/."]. 

owewe [\ J a tree, Combretoden- 
dron africanum. 

owe [..] (i) foot, leg. (2) trace; 

y-owe n-esi ya 1-eoa [...y 
"look at the trace that the 
(bush-) pig took to pass here". 
(3) wheel ; ow-ikeke [ / / ] bicycle- 

owee [ ' %] broom, sweeping brush ; 

cf. Yor. owo [-J. 
owi [\] a tree, Buchholzia; its 

fruit is eatable (looks like cooked 

liver) . 

owifi [ *] morning; owis oirfoirji 
[/...J (or oiioii [..]) early 
morning when the mist still 
obstructs the wide view, at 
about 5 o'clock to 5.30; owiewiE 
6-5kpa [, m ,J'] some time after 
the preceding, at about 6 o'clock. 
Redupl. owi-owis [//] every 

owo 1 [/] one (in counting). 

owo 2 [ ] a soup prepared with 
pepper ground on uro [.J, 
crawfish (ize n-ofua [./'], also 
ground on uro), and potash 
(odo [\], also ground) mixed in 
oil (Eoi [,~\]). Boiling water is 
poured over it, whereupon it is 
left to thicken (ki [J]). Poor 
people use eo-axus [.J J] in- 
stead of odo. 

owoyo ['/] noise of a crowd; cf. 
woyo [/]. 

owowo [..J (1) heat. (2) quick 
temper; ou-owowo [.*%..] a 
fiery, quick tempered man, v. 

ibalegbe[ ]. (3) inflammation 

of the lining of the uterus 
(endometritis) . 
oworo [./] eleven, 
oxa [/] (1) story; gi-ado xaa-xa 
(for xa w oxa) [,JJ.'] let us 

(come and) tell a story ! (2) call- 
ing game by imitating noises, 
e.g. by pressing one's fingers to 
the nostrils, as done by hunters; 
c/.xa [J], kp-oxa [/]. 

oxa [ ## ] a big round drum kept at 
the 6guie[, J, about 5 feet high ; 
used to summon people to some 
of the ugie [ # J ceremonies; v. 
kpe 1 [/}. 

oxS [ # J a rat with pointed snout; 
has an unpleasant smell; on 
account of its smell it is called 
oxa n-aO-efiCi (aCs [..]) [..'.*.] 
"oxa, wife of the dead"; it 
cries fi§fieng ['"]. 

oxi [\] circle; circles are e.g. 
made on the ground when 
somebody is about to purify 
himself after some breach of 

taboo, v. ihooegbe [ ]. oxi w 

uhuou [."*.] is the part of 
the skull on which hair is 
left when the crown of the head 
is bald. Redupl. oxioxi [/•] 

oxia [/] walk; oxia wo C-egbe 

[.V. '] walking has tired me, I 
am very tired ; also egb-oxia wo 

oxia [ #t f (I) "walker": driver- 
ant, similar to asaooto [ ], 

possibly identical. (2) oxi-asS 
[/ * •]'' night-walkers" : a "gang" 
of people who in former times 
roamed through the streets of 
Benin City and Use [_], killing 
everybody they met. The heads 
of the yictims were taken to a 
shrine at the 8guae [.J, and 
whoever killed fourteen people 
in the course of one night, was 
made a chief. They were elected 
by the Eyasoo [ ## J from the 
quarter Iduo-ihogbe [.'.'.], the 
Ogbelaka ['.'.] people, the Isir 


(tero-people and from Use [..];<?/■ 
xia. [']. 

oxie [/] (i) the part near the edge 
of a flat object, e.g. a table, v. 
igege [""I; yesi-£e k-oxi-ore n-o; 

y£ de (sike [7]) [••*.;;••] 

don't pull it to the edge of the 
table in case it falls. (2) some- 
thing that fills a hole; oxi-ogo 
[ " ] cork; rhi-oxie gu vz ya xi- 

ogana [..'."...".] "g ive me a cork 
to (take) 'and cork (xio [/]) this 
bottle ! ' ' oxi-swu [ / \ ] but ton ; 
oxi-ewu t)£ fia fua [/ W] m y 
button came off; cf xio [J], 
oxixa [ * " J the tree which bears 
oyeye *[y ]; also called erh- 
oyeye [.'/.] and even simply 
oyeye which, however, is rightly 
the name of the fruit; very 
hardy; used for utoyoto [....] 
hedges (serving as poles for 

eru [/]). 
oxogbo 1 [/*] farm-hut made of 
sticks and thatched with palm 

oxogbo 2 [."] a women's style of 
hair-dressing, worn, like okuku 
[ a /], at eho [.'] time; the hair is 
heightened with uke [/] and 
drawn together over the fore- 
head where it is knotted; v. 

"to ["]» eto [/]• 
oxoxo [V.] striking with one 

or two knuckles ; v. gbe [ * ] ; so 

oxoe [ \ ] continuous quarrelling or 
enmity; cf x5 [/]. 

oxu§ 1 [..] a tree, Ricinodendron 

oxue 2 [ . . ] a cloth woven from the 
fibres of raffia leaves. 

oxuo [ ] (pi. i-) woman; ixu- 
ehe [ "•] "women of the 
harem", e.g. as address in the 
greeting wado w ixu-eri£ [/*•••] 

salute, you women of the harem ! 
Outside the Eris, this term would, 
however, refer to the Oba's 
wives, v. oloi ["]; oxu-odiS 
[ * ] senior wife of a poly- 
gamous household ; oxu-ohaoE 
[/*..] pregnant woman ; v. Ekpo ~ 
niyske [\"Y.]. 

oxuo 1 prescribed individual 

portion of any common task. 

Oxuo 2 [ # ^v] name of a deep river 
nearEki^adob [.".']; its praise- 
name is oxuo n-iy-amo 
" Oxuo, the mother of children''. 

OxuCa ["J (1) name of a river, 
near Sbue [ ]. (2) name of a 
Bini deity (an ih2 [.\|). 

oxurhuxurhu [..*..] haphazardly; 
at random (of people snatching 
things in a hurry, e.g. when 
cutting up a killed elephant); 
cf xurhuxurhu [ ]. 

oxwaba ["Y] a tree, Homalium 
macroptera; bark used for soup 
for women after delivery. 

oxwae basket; oxwa-olema 

[."...] "cook's basket": a bas- 
ket in which the ingredients 
for soups are kept on the fire- 
place; cf le ['], ema [..]. 

oxwaxwa [...] harmattan. 

oxwse ['J (1) a creeper. (2) fruit 
of this creeper, a kind of nut 
which is eaten with corn (maize) . 

oya [ J insult; disgrace; oya 
gb-oyia 6s [./.'] "an insult has 
killed (touched) my enemy": 
I have been insulted, or, met 
with disgrace; 0. oyia ['J, 
ahiauE [' vj. 

Oyeru [V ] name of a sib; its 
hereditary head is chief Ezima 
[' * ']of Uhe [. J which is also the 
centre df the sib; its greeting 
in the morning is la-yeru ['J']. 

oyi [/] thief, robber. 



oyimaa [' ] exclamation of an- 
noyance, damn! 

°y»y *[...] comb; oyiy-erha [//] 
wooden comb ; cf. Yor. ooya [ _ ] . 

oyo ['*] a kind of raffia (" bam- 
boo"), not common; produces a 
very intoxicating wine. 

oyouie hunting-camp, with 

a temporary shed; cf. yo i ['], 
trie [J]; v. akpekpe ["'], eko 

[.']» ago [.']. 
oze [ ' ] lead (metal) ; cf Yor. 

oje [J]. 

ozi i [..] crab. 

ozi 2 [ # J a strong wind, good for 
farm-burning; ozi la [ /] a 
strong wind is blowing; idiom. : 
ozi 1-uxuCu rie [ * *] "ozi has 
passed above and gone away", 
i.e. has not had any effect: an 
impending punishment has not 
been carried out; ozi o [.*'] an 
exclamation during farm-burn- 
ing, when a wind is blowing; 
to urge wind and fire on; cf 
Yor. oji [.J. 

ozikpab ['."%.] lizard. 

oziya [/'] a tree, Daniellia thuri- 
fera ; exudes a gum that is used 
as a candle, mainly by hunters 
on their travels ; when heated it 
is adhesive; cf Yor. ojia [.J], 

ozubu [_'] a curly-haired dog. 

ozuoba [ V ] another expression 
for oloi [*']; cf. oba ["*]. 

o- [J conjunctive pronoun of the 
3rd pers. sgl. 

oaxg [\] (1) a kind of ogi [.J 
(ikp-ogi [ ,\ . ]) ; it is a climbing 
plant ; fruit is white. (2) corpse, 
v. ikflU . 

Dba [ ] the ruler of Benin who 
lives in the Eguae [. J at Benin 
City; among his praise-names are 
akpobkpob [../%.], uku ["], v. 

[..I ekps [. .], to ['], agbaye 
[/.]> Ayehi [ / J ; cf. Yor . oba [ • • ] . 

obada [_ J a tree, Ficus vogellii; 
it often occurs parasitically 
on other trees; a praise- 
name: obada n-okok-ioi w ahia£>£ 

[ "\J that feeds the 

children of birds", i.e. all the 
birds, because the fruit is eaten 
by birds. 

obafi [ _ ' ] hunting ; the hunt ; used 
with the verbs ru ["] and rie 
[J], but apparently not alone. 

obanabe a shrub, Spheno- 

centrum jolly anum; its straight 
root goes so deep into the earth 
that nobody is believed to be able 
to find its end; v. ogwega [f\ J. 

Obazenu ["*/] (Yor. oba ju lu 

"the Dba surpasses the 
country (?) ") a chief; 2nd senior 
at Iw-eguae [.^v.]; the title is 
not hereditary; v. Esere [..J. 

Obazuaye [ ' V ] " the Dba chooses 
the pleasure of the world"; a 
chief, the third in rank at the 
Ib-iwe [.X] society, or the 
second, as far as the actual work 
of the society is concerned, as 
Osodi [' ], the first chief in 
rank, represents the Dba's father, 
and cannot take part in it ; cf. Dba 

["]. ze [']> u wa [.J, aye ["]. 
obe (also ebe) [' J (1) harm; okpia 
na ru eoi obe gbe [.J ,"'.'] this 
man has done a very dangerous 
thing (i.e. having dangerous 
consequences, not only an action 
entailing danger, such as e.g. 
killing a leopard; but it may 
refer e.g. to a barber cutting 
one's hair without skill, so that 
it looks bad, or to curing a 
wound in a painful way) . (2) un- 
satisfactory (scil. work); cf. 
ebe [,\|; v. omobe [/.]. 


obe ["] a salutation (similar to 
Yoruba oku, sku [•']) which is 
followed by another word to 
specify time, occupation of the 
one addressed, etc.; ob-urhiooe 
"salute with awaking": 
good morning (also ob-owis o 
[•*'.]); ob-ava ['%.] good day; 
ob-ota ["VI good afternoon, 
or, evening (from ca. 3 p.m.); 
ob-oxia ["•] "salute with the 
walk " : welcome ! (used to some- 
body arriving after a journey, or 
met on the road going home); 
ob-inwina ['%..] "salute with 
work": greeting used while 
finding somebody at work ; ob- 
eu-atu [ '.']" salute with what is 
being done" is more usual: well 
done! The latter is also used 
when praising some piece of work 
referred to in conversation; v. 

xl [Jl 

obetekoko [ ] a timber tree. 

obsoE [ ] stammerer; cf. b-e(3e 

obiomo [,..] parent; cf. bis [ ], 
omo [/], obiomoiriem [.../."%]. 

obiomoiriem [..,/.*%] " a parent- 
(who) -does-no t-eat-any thing" : 
an imaginary person invoked 
by parents when their children 
worry them during meals. They 
tell them yati-obiomolrieoi re 

[J /."V] £° anc * ca ^ D ^*' *° 

get rid of them for a while; 

cf obiomo [...], re ['], eoi [.%]. 
obo 1 [ / ] (pi. e-) a " doctor M ; there 
are oracle-, witch- and ordeal- 
doctors as well as those who 
cure, or make rain. The oracle- 
doctors are composed of four 
different groups according to 
the different kinds of oracles; 
there are ob-ogwega [.*;.], ob- 
ewawa [.%..], ob-akpsle [."%..], 

and Db-at5mila [/'..]. The ob- 
ewawa may be an obo n-oz-ise 
f * 1 "a doctor who chooses 

L • • • • J 

seeds", i.e. one who gives the 
name of a suspect to each one 
of several seeds (when trying to 
find out the perpetrator of an 
offence), and finds the guilty 
one by means of ewawa [...]. 
The ordeal-doctors, ob-ita [ J 
are ob-it-dfigbo [/*\] "palm- 
oil - ordeal - doctor " , oh - it - Sbe 
[ '*.] "leaf -ordeal doctor", or 
obo n-od-ita [...*.] (one who 
knows all sorts of ordeals) . The 
experts for the feather- and 
sasswood-ordealshave no special 
name besides that of ob-ita. 
The witch-doctor, obo n-owa 

n-azg [....,/."]" doctor who gives 
food to the witches'', also called 
obo n-oy-ada [...'.] "doctor who 
goes to the cross-roads", leads 
negotiations with witches and 
pacifies them by gifts of food 
from his clients. The "curing 
doctor", ob-odi [/.], bears no 
outward sign of his profession, 
but is usually very competent 
and cures people for money or 
for their services. A doctor who 
makes his diagnosis by looking 
into his patients' eyes (in case 
of illness or "juju- trouble") is 
called obo n-omi-ato [... *.] i.e. 
"a doctor who looks eye". 
An antisocial individual working 
with "bad medicines" may be 
called ob-erhia [/.] a "spoil- 
doctor " . A " doctor ' ' who travels 
round the country and makes 
a living by it is called obo 

n-oy-eria [ '] "a doctor who 

goes grazing". The four types 
of oracle doctors are represented 
by different people. The ob- 

ogwega [ / V, ] practises only that 
sort of oracle. Other doctors 
may know the method, but they 
are not called ob-ogwega. If 
another doctor does not know 
the ogwega, he may have to call 
in an ob-ogwega. The ob-ogwega 
is paid for his work, but he is 
also a farmer, as the money he 
earns is not a sufficient liveli- 
hood. The oracle is learned from 
another ogwega doctor (without 
staying with him); itie [/] (the 
code) is said to take at least 
three months to learn. After 
this, eria [/], the analysis of the 
code-words, is learnt. That is 
said to take more than six 
months. If a man is too keen 
on learning eria so that he starts 
on it before knowing itie pro- 
perly, he is supposed never to 
learn itie correctly. Then he is 
called: 06a n-ogu-eria xe w iha 
[ ***•' ] "a man who knows 

L • • • • J 

analysis waits for the oracle, 
i.e. the calling out". An ewawa 
learner must be a servant under 
a doctor. The ewawa doctor, who 
is always an Osu [/] priest, also 
undertakes cures, but they are 
not as good as the ob-odi. Most 
of them also give food to witches. 
Their servant is called ohagba 
[...] or owaise [...]. The ap- 
prenticeship takes four to seven 
years because the pupils learn 
cures at the same time. Ewawa 
doctors are payed with money 
and they only farm when they 
have a big family. They make 
many charms, e.g. some for 
traders ensuring good business, 
some warding off danger for 
travellers, some against witches 
for sick people, etc. Especially 

a charm "mentioning a man's 
name ' ' (eb-usueni [ /\ # t ] " name- 
mentioning charm")* and a 
charm speaking by itself (ooi efi ? 
m [/'*.] "son of the Under- 
world") procure them more 
clients than the other oracle 
doctors have. This fact, together 
with their acting as witch 
doctors, enables them to make 
a living by being doctors only, 
without additional farm work. 
Their knowledge of herbs is, 
however, said to be smaller than 
that of the eb-ofomila [/'..]. 
An ob-akpele [."%..] is mostly an 
Oloku ["'] priest, i.e. not a 
priest at a public shrine, but he 
has a bigger Olokii shrine in his 
house than an ordinary Oloku 
shrine. Many of his clients come 
to his Oloku shrine and bring 
things for the yearly Oloku 
sacrifice (eh-olokii [."*]). The 
oracle method is learnt in about 
six months' time. During this 
time the pupil keeps his akpele 
[...] in a pot at his Oloku 
shrine (which nearly every adult 
possesses). Charms are also put 
into the pot, and the akpele 
has first been charmed by the 
teacher, a full communal Oloku 
priest. Afterwards the akpele 
is put on an ukpabo [ ] tray 
and taken to some cross-roads 
(ada [_]) where it is charmed 
again and buried with the charm 
for a fortnight "in order to see 
the truth". (Ada being a meet- 
ing place for witches, spirits, 
etc., anything hidden there sees 
them.) Akpele and Ogwega have 
to be familiar with witches be- 
cause they procure food for the 
witches by indicating pacifica- 


tion sacrifices, ese [..]. After 
the fortnight, the pupil, having 
learnt his craft, takes it out and 
is an ob-akpsle. The ob-ofomila 
must be a "priest" of Dfomila 
[/..], i.e. Ifa (Yoruba). (But 
there are no public shrines or 
priests of Dfomila.) Dfomila is 
the Yoruba god of palm kernels 
(and divination), and people 
from Akure e.g. are more expert 
in this method than Bini people. 
A full babalawo [..**] (Yoruba 
name for the Dfomila priest) 
gathers the kernels from the 
base of ivl^ofomila ['"'.J, "Of. 
kernels'', a special sort of oil 
palm, and gives them to the 
pupil. The pupil and his family 
smoothe the kernels by means 
of a grindstone, wash them with 
a charm and keep them for three 
months in a pot of oil. This is 
called ovi-ofomila [..*'..] "he 
has taken the Dfomila" (pi. 
verb). During this time small 
sacrifices are made to them until 
the pupil is (financially) able to 
" take " them. If he has no means 
he must possibly leave them in 
the pot for a year. At last, big 
sacrifices are made over a period 
of a fortnight during which 
time the pupil must procure an 
axwExwe ['/], i.e. oracle in- 
strument, of his own. Then the 
Df5mila are taken out and are 
afterwards put on an ukpo [\] 
(mud bed) on which many cloths 
have been spread, forming a 
heap with a shallow cavity at 
the top. Parrot-tail-feathers are, 
among other things, added as 
adornments. The babalawo asks 
the kernels whether the pupil 
will live long and be prosperous 

(i.e. have many children). Only 
after this installation of the 
Dfomila kernels is the teaching 
started which takes more than 
a year, and at the end of which 
the pupil becomes an ob- 
ofomila. Some of these doctors 
are farmers, some traders. They 
also concern themselves with 
cures, and they also learn about 
medicines. The oracle plays a 
part in their cures by naming 
the leaves to be used in special 
cases (by quoting previous in- 
stances). The money given to 
the ob-ofomila does not enable 
him to live on his practice as is 
the case with ob-ewawa. Ordeal 
doctors are not priests. 

Dbo 2 [ '] name of a sib; their 
headman is the ogi-ugo [.'.J, 
and their greeting la w obo [***]. 
They are said to be the best 
doctors among the Binis; their 
centre is Ugo N-iyek-orhiouo 
[.. "..] which is one of the 
centres of the Osu [/] cult as 
well. Not every "doctor" be- 
longs to this sib; v. Egbee [,\J, 

obowa [ #> J house-builder; cf. 
bo ['], owa [.']. 

obodidi [ . . " ] (also obotidi) bad luck ; 
the term involves the idea that 
some "palaver" is the result of 
the bad luck or accident ; idiom. : 
ogb-obo y-obodidi [.'*.."] "he 
knocked his hand into bad 
luck" : he had an unlucky hand 
(said e.g. when something has 
slipped out of somebody's hand 
and broken) ; v. okpstu [ *]. 

obuohie [..J (no pi.) "decider": 
judge; cf. bu [}], ohit [/]; v. 
bu VI 

odado [ _ ] (a rather idiomatic 
word): a trader who trades on 

his own account ; idiom. : okpoua 
xl-odado [....'.'] a "helper" has 
become a trader of his own: a 
man who was a nobody before, 
has become important now. 

odafe [...] (i) husband; odaf-5 
[ . .J] y° ur ( s ^-) husband. (2) a 
man with many wives and child- 
ren; cf. odo [..], ukp-afg [/. ]. 

odanyo [ . . . ] drunkard ; cf. da [ * ], 

anyo [.']. 

odaoofigbo [ ] " oil- test er ' ' : 

produce inspector; cf. dat3e [/], 
ofigbo [ •.]. 

odeku§ [..'] buying on credit; cf 
kus ['], oxiekug [./]; v. i*o f], 
de ['], xie [•]. 

odio [.'] (pi. e-) (1) senior (among 
some people); m-ot-odio o-ima 

eha n-oxia na [ ' J I am the 

senior among us three who are 
going here. (2) senior, headman, 
of a sib, in odi-ggbee [,"\]; v. 
oka^sgbse [.">]. (3) pi., age- 
group of old men; it usually 
consists of men who are more 
than fifty years of age; they 
supervise manual work in the 
village, entertain strangers, and 
perform the village sacrifices at 
the ogw-edio [/ *], their meeting 
place, which is also the shrine 
of the deceased edi5 [/] of the 
community. They prepared ebo 

[."%] * 0F tne sa * e return °* tn e 
iyele [ ' . . ] in case of war. The 

edio n-ene [.,"%.], the four elders, 
also called ikadel-ene ['.'.'], the 
four pillars, are the four men 
who are in control of the internal 
affairs of a village. These do not 
necessarily include a chief re- 
siding in the village. Their head 
is the odio-wete [.'.'], the most 
senior man in the village, and 
the three others are called 

Dzukpogieva [ ], ozukpogieha 

[ ], and ozukpogiene [ ]. 

The odi3-wete gives his orders 
after consultation with his col- 
leagues and may impose fines in 
cases of disobedience, consisting 
of the seizure of a chicken or a 
goat. His power has been much 
weakened with the young gene- 
ration. He is given a special 
share of the percentage of tax 
refunded to the village, of killed 
animals, and of any royalty that 
may be paid to the village, e.g. 
by a timber company, and the 
other members of the edio n-ene 
also receive a share in proportion 
to their seniority, before the 
general distribution of the bene- 
fits begins; v. ayik-odi5 [.'/], 
owete [..']. The oldest age- 
group in the Dvia [ /] -society is 
also called edi5 [.']. (4) the 
spirits of the departed elders 
of a village, worshipped at the 
Dgw-edi5 [ *']. (5) in edl-ebo 
['*•]" seniors of doctors ' ' : term 
for the exwae ['.] and oko [\] 
of a doctor when taken to a 
place where he wants to feed 
the witches. The reason for this 
term seems to be that the exwae 
and oko belong to the doctor's 
Osu at his home but that they 
represent the witches in the 
case referred to, because they 
are supposed to "send" the food 
to the witches . ' 4 The ones senior 
to doctors" would, then, refer to 
the witches; cf. di5 [J], 
odo [ # J husband; odo 6e w ir-owa 
[ /*'*] my husband is not at 
home; odo^o 00 [..V] where is 
your husband? (also odo fue 
[ t .J] and od-ue [,J] in quick 
speech) ; cf odafs [ #< J. 


odolagbo ] a "mend-the- 

world" : a reformer; a man who 
wants to better the world 
(Amad. Biogr.); cf. dob [/], 

oduski [ #> J (no pi.) trader; cf 

do2[*],€ki[. J;v.oxl[ # J,od8kul 
[..*], okpate [..J, odado [./]. 

odukpo [_] weaver; cf. do i ['], 

ukpo [J. 

ofgdi [...] palm-nut cutter; c/. 

fia[-], 6dl[/]. 
ofi w oto [/.J a bush-rat (the 

biggest kind of rat); c/. ofg [/], 

otoe [.J. 

ofita [...] "pro verb- thrower": a 
man who says, or has said, a 
proverb (the word is used in 
a proverb); cf fi ['], itt["]. 

ofo [/] sweat; perspiration; ofo fo 
Cs [ / / ] I am perspiring ; c/. fo ['] . 

Dfoe [A] a variant of ufo [/]. 

of ui5egbe [....] " body coolness ' ' : 
peace; cf fu [*], egbe [/]. 

ofuoegbe [\\] name of a pond at 
Benin City ; cf of uoegbe [ . . . J ; 
v. oyodo [..J. 

oga [/] (i) head-man of a working 
gang (esp. in a timber camp). 
(2) (modern usage, said not to be 
approved by the old people) 
master; women call their hus- 
bands oga [ '] (formerly odo x*z 
[./] "my husband"); cf. Yor. 

oga [ / ] a long and straight spear ; 
v. L.R. fig. 68 (the attendant to 
the left). 

oga [*J net; oga n-aya ku w axe 
[*..*./] net for packing pots 
(used by potters) ; odu w oga [ / \] 
he is making (" weaving ") a net ; 
cf. Jekri oga [ \ ] . 

agaga [ % * " ] man with continuous 
erection of penis; cf gogoogo 
[ ]• 

ogEOE [."%.] a tree, Barteria nigri- 
tiana or ftstulosa) grows very 
high, killing all the surrounding 

trees (v. akuobisi [/%..])• 
ogEzu [ mt J another expression for 

orhou£ [ ' ^\ . ] " guinea-fowl " ; 

uxi-og£zu fa ['"...] are you 

selling a guinea-fowl? 
ogiodE [ ] (1) guide. (2) leader: 

ringleader ; ya yit~ogiod£ o-uwa- 

veva ['*...*..'] who was the 

leader of you two? cf. gie 1 [J], 

ode [.*]> igiodE [...]. 

ogiorp [/'] a big chain; imu w § 
y-ogiorp [.*'."] I put him in 
chains ; v. eya [ ' J (small chains) ; 
cf. Jekri ogioro [/']. 

ogioOa [ # m 9 ] a man who laughs at 
somebody; cf. gi£ ['], oCa [.*%]; 
(in a proverb). 

°g° [. ] bottle; kp-ogo ni m£ n- 
iyas-am£ [/*•./.] "wash that 
bottle for me that I may take it 
to draw water" (kpe ['], sa [']). 

°g° [ . . ] M the raffia, " bamboo ", 
Raphia vinifera ; ogo na m-irewe 
[,J'\] this raffia bears (mo [ * ]) 
irewe ["J (its seed). (2) a palm 
wine: latex from the top of 
Raphia vinifera (the tree is not 
felled); v. exwExwE [ ' ], udf- 
uxuou [/..J, ikpo [**], anyo 
[/]; cf. Yor. ogoro [...]. 

3 g°g [...] crest (on the head); 
ogog-okpa [ \ ] cock's crest; v. 
etoyotoyo [./.J. 

ogfuaEOE [ ] " word-speaker ' ' : 
speaker (not- any rank); cf. 

gUa [J], EOE [..]; V. OtEUE [...]. 

oguooadia [ ] (pi. e-) "stay- 

with-a-man " : personal servant ; 
c /- gu ['], o(3a [;~\], dia 1 [']. # 

ogwa [/] (1) a type of room in 
Bini houses which contains a 
mud couch and opens into an- 
other room (iku [ \] or £ri£ [/]) 





at one side, thus having three 
walls only ; ' ' parlour ' ' ; ogu-osu 
[/••] "parlour" of Osu [/]; 
a private Dgwa [/] where 
the Osu shrine is kept; this 
is situated in the bath-room 
(egu [*.]). Native ' 'doctors" 
cure their patients there; the 
patients enter by means of a 
back entrance in order to ensure 
the privacy of the house. In the 
case of other people, Osu is kept 
secret from the eyes of visitors. 

(2) ogu-ogu [/"•] smithy (Bini 
smithies are open to the road). 

(3) ogu-edi5 [."'] meeting place 
of the elders in Bini villages ; it 
is likewise open towards the 
street ; discussions and sacrifices 
to the Edi5 [/] are held there. 

ogwagwa [/'] a trap for animals. 

Dgwaya [./] a trap for animals, 
similar to soirhi [\ J. 

ogwalerha [....] " tree-finder ' ' : 
man (or men) who searches for 
timber trees in the forest (a 
timbermen s expression) ; cf 
gwab [/], erha [/]. 

Dgwemoto [....] "motor-puller": 
not so much used as edraeva [ / J 
"driver"; cf gwa 1 [*], emoto 


ogweva [ . . . ] " knowing-two 9 ' : 
double-faced people; men who 
foster trouble by backing both 
parties ; ogweva n-eite [...."] ' ' a 
double-faced man that cannot 
be despised" because nobody 
knows his real intentions, and, 
therefore, his power is con- 
siderable); cf gwe ['], eva [/]. 

ogwiezo [...] litigant; cf. gwi [*], 
ezo ["]. 

ogwoto [ .~\ . ] slow time in dancing ; 
ogba [*.] thirty; cf Yor. ogb5 [•.]. 

ogbagbe [,/] a trap for animals 
living on the ground. 

ogbalama [ ] nickname for a 

man who makes it his business 
to interfere with other people's 
affairs (' 1 perambulator " ) ; cf 
gbe 1 ['], alama [...]. 

ogbebe [...] clerk; cf gbs [*], 
ebe [ /], ugbebe [...]; v. akowe 
[*'] ; (Yor.) [. # ) ] which is more 
in use at present. 

ogbehs (pi. i-) fisherman; cf. 
gbe 1 eh§[\], igbeh§[..J. 

ogbekpa [..J boxer; cf. gbe 1 ['], 
ekpa [/]; also agbekpa [,"\] (an 
appellation of the god Dxwahe 

[./.]of Udeni [...]). 

ogbsoeho [ ] a man who reveals 

secrets which he is not meant to 
disclose; an indiscreet person; 
cf gbe 1 ['], si38 [..], £ho [/]. 
ogbo [\] new; fresh; oy-ogbo no 
[*'/] it is new; ok-ogb-ona xi 
["...*] this is new corn ; redupl. 
ogbo^ogbo [//] quite fresh, 
ogbobfo public knowledge, 

in mu e(5s [" ] ladi-ogbolofo (la 
dia [•*]) to bring a 

matter to public notice, 
ogbugbo [...] farmer; cf. gbe 1 ['], 

ugbo [ ')'> v - owze [,%]. 
°X ae L. ] a position in the ogwega 
[ ^ . ]-divination (c.c.o.o.) ; of 
Yor. origin? 
D X e [ ] W belonging to; oy-ofa, 
oy-ui3e ['/] mine; oy-ue ['/] 
yours (also: oy-uws [*".]); oy-oe 
["\\ his; oy-oua, oy-uCa ['/] 
ours (oy-ima [".]); oy-ua [ J] 
yours, pi. (oy-uwa [".]); oy-ifa 
[" ] theirs, oy-oue na xi ['.'.] 
this is my own. oy-a ["] whose; 
oy-a no [*\] whose is it? oya w 
owa na xi ["/.'] whose is this 
house ? (2) o-oye [ " ] concerning ; 
as to; with reference to (always 

with a following relative sen- 
tence?); o-oy-iy-erha tte n-axa 

n * [ . . . J J] concerning my 
father's money about which we 

were speaking 

oyede [ ] plantain; oysd-ebo 
[."*] ''European plantain": 

oyodo [ ## J (artificial) pond ; wide, 
but not deeper than two men's 
length; there are three in Benin 
City, one of them being oyod- 
sgu [.".], a pond situated in the 
Ogbe [\] quarter (v. sgu ['.]); 
cf Yor. ogodo [...].■ 

banana; oyede negisre [../..] oyodogbo [..%.] a cane found in 

the bush ; it is similar to sugar- 
cane, but not edible ; v. uxwerhe 


D TPP [...] a trap for animals, 
consists of a rope with a noose 
which is tied to a forked stick ; 
animals caught in the noose are 
strangled when the stick is 
caught by obstacles in the way. 
oha i [/] bride; also ooi^pha 

[."']; cf. irhioha [...]. 
oha 2 [ ' ] a position in the ogwsga 
[ ^ , ]-divination (c.o.o.o.) ; of 
Yor. origin? 
oha i [ J catarrh ; a cold in the 
head; oha sa t5e [..'*] I have a 
cold (v. sa 2 [']). 
Oha 2 [ J name of a river forming 
part of the western boundary of 
the Bini-speaking territory (v. 
Is-iloko [.*'.]. 
ohae a grown-up man with- 

. out a wife : a bachelor or 
widower; emu-ohae [/ '\] "ashes 
of a bachelor": ashes from a 
bachelor's hearth, are used in a 
cure for elapurhu [/*•] (fugitive 
swelHngs), but bachelors con- 
sider their being taken as a 
mockery; cf. oha [/] (?). 
ohs [ '] present; gift; ohs uyuho 

n-uyare ugbugbehia [.'.**••..**•] 
lit. "present (it is that) you like 
to eat (receive) all the time"; 
cf Yor. ofs [J]. 
One [\] name of an Oba who was 
crippled in his later days and 
has been cast in brass as a 

small plantain" (a special kind 
of plantain); oysd-egbo [.'"] 
"bush-plantain" : a tree, Anoni- 
dium manii ; so called on account 
of its soft wood and fast growth ; 
cf Yor. ogsds [...]. 

oyens [* *] (i) irreplaceable (?), 
unchangeable (? ) , in oysn-osa 
[*."%.]" * ne unchangeable God ' ' ; 
agws w oyEns [.*.'] an ugie con- 
secrated to Osa [_]. (2) Bini 
name for the Oni at He Ife [• * - J, 
cf. Yor. Doni [>•]. (3) a piece of 
kola (in those that consist of 
five pieces) having three edges 
on the tip; when the kola is 
broken and the pieces are re- 
arranged, oysne cannot be put 
into another place but the one 
which it originally had. . 

oyers [/V] hymen; oxuo n- 
amahefia-t-Dysr£ [,."\.~Y] vir- 
gin; cf. fia [']; v. ua [/]. 

o^ide [/J method of growing 
yams with the support of single 
ikpssi [ a # J only, i.e. without any 
eye [ ' ] (and without n-ema [ \ ] , 
i.e. without tying the yam 
branches from one ikpesi pole to 
the other). 

o*o [.J respect; om-oyo [/\] 
"child of respect": greeting- 
formula to a woman after de- 
livery: "may your child respect 
you"; cf Yor. owo [_]. 

Oyodo [/'] name of a river in 
which Dxwahs's [_/.] dog is 
said to have perished. 



cripple, v. L.R. 51 (on 52 
uncrippled) and R.D. xvii, 1, 

2, 4- 

°hs [..] re d ant; builds its nest 
by threading leaves together in 
the shape of a ball, and lives 
inside ; they live mostly on kola 
and unwonwe trees; they 
are said to tremble ("shake") 
always and are therefore used 
by doctors, when making 1 ' medi- 
cines" for frightening people 
(and other purposes). 

Dhenika [/..] a chief who per- 
forms the purification rites in 
cases of suicide in Benin City 
(at Ogbe and at the quarter 
where the suicide occurred). He 
is not the "land-owner". 

oka [/] (1) headman (always fol- 
lowed by a genitive) ; oka^sgbse 
[,"\] headman of a sib; oka w 
srhia [/',] ringleader (in a bad 
sense); oka-kuo [/\] war-chief; 
oka olotu [ " ' ] a title appear- 
ing ~in the' history of Benin, 
"headman of headmen" (Egh. 
Hist.), also "senior headman". 
(2) when used alone: master of 

ogwsga [."%.]. 

oka [\] corn (maize) ; cf. Yor. oka 
[•J and Ibo oka [' J. 

oka. [ m J a position in the ogwega 
[ A .]-divination(c.c.c.o.) ; (a) oka 
n-abe [ . ,"\ ] the same position 
occurring on both strings of 
seeds; it foretells quarrel, hence 

(b) idiom.: quarrel; v. gbe x ["]; 

(c) in erha n-ogb-oka n-abe 
[,.~."\J a creaking tree ; of Yor. 
origin? A combination of oka 
with odi [/] is okadi [J'] 
which is used as an idiomatic 
word for "heart" (v. ekokodu 

[ ""%..]) by old men and masters 
of the ogwsga J -divination. 

okahuou [ ] "touch-heads": a 
catch of two rats in one trap 
(from both entries, so that their 
heads touch, counted as trophy at 
okaruosa [/_] (pi. e-) debtor; 
more used than oruosa [ ] and 
oriosa [...]; cf. ju ['], osa [/]. 

okeoioko [ ] " seed-planter ' ' : 

planter ; plantation-owner (in 
contrast to the ordinary farmer) ; 
cf. ko ['], eCi [/\]. 
okiku [ r# J a tall cap worn by 
warriors; cf. L.R. figs. 108, 136. 
okoto [ tm9 ] the undermost ; cf. ke 1 

["]» ©to [..];. v. Eyasoo [...]. 
okodu [ t "\J big "dane-gun", i.e. 
muzzle loader, used by hunters 
for big game such as pig and 
oku [,\\ damage; mischief caused 
to one's self and others; oru oku 
[ / ' \] he has done some damage ; 
a curse: u^u oku [*.."\] may you 
cause damage! cf. ku 1 [']. 
okuiku [ ] player; cf. ku [J], 

okpa ["] one (but in counting: 
owo [.']); ow-okpa [/'] one 
house; okpa keka [*'..] one 
only; okpa w iro o-ugie [""Y*] 
"one is not in twenty": nine- 
teen; okpa nya w ugie [""•] 
' ' one is on twenty ' ' : twenty-one ; 
okpa nya w uti [*""•] 201 : this 
is a holy number, or denotes a 
very high number, the maximum 
that can be reached; there are 
e.g. 201 dances at the Dba's 
coronation (apparently the exact 
number is controlled), or v. e.g. 
Egh. Hist. p. 10, where the Oba 
Swuare [ ' \ ] is said to have 
conquered 201 towns (but v. 
p. 17, where Ozolua [ §< J con- 
quers 200) . This is probably due 

to Yoruba influence, in whose 
pantheon the number also plays 
an important role; v. ihifo [/.], 

iwens [./.]. 
okpa i ["'] wooden plate, always 
in pairs, smaller than uro [, J; 

v. em [.%]. 
okpa 2 ["] odd number; term 
used in a game of guessing 
grains held in one's hand, v. 
iss n-ata ["..']" grain-guessing ' ' ; 
v. izu [, 

okpa [.'] a blue bird with a long 
red bill (a kingfisher?); it is 
considered to be a great achieve- 
ment to kill an okpa, as it does 
not go into a trap ; that is why 
the old people say when they 
hear somebody boasting of his 
hunting exploits: ugb-okpa ra 
[" \ ] have you killed an okpa? 

okpa [ mt ] cock ; if a cock crows at 
night it is killed because it 
makes the night appear to be 
day: inasmuch as sexual inter- 
course during day-time is for- 
bidden to women-followers of 
the gods Ake [/] and Oxwahe 
[_/ J, i.e. to most (in former 
times to all) Bini women, so that 
they have to make a pacification 
sacrifice whenever the cry of the 
cock reaches them during sexual 
intercourse at night; okp-okao 
[ ^ J "the first cock": the first 
crow of the cock : early morning ; 
uyurhio re u-okp-okao avis 

['.... V"] "y° u should get up 
and come when the first cock is 
crowing", i.e. at dawn; cf 
okporhu [...] . 
okpakpata [....] (pi. i-) player of 
the akpata [ " ' ] (a native string- 
instrument); the players sing 
historical ballads; cf. kpe [J], 
akpata [ " '1. 

okpanigiako [../.] (also a-) (i) 
"what removes the firmness of 
teeth": tooth-ache brought 
about by teething in children. 
(2) a monster in sfioi [/.]; cf. 
kpano(?) [/], igie [..], ako [..]. 

okpatals [...J gonorrhoea (in a 
severe form) ; cf. kpatale(?) [/J. 

okpate [. . J (1) a trader who buys 
on full or partial credit and 
pays when he has sold his 
goods; v. oduski J. (2) (pi. 
only, e-) a gang of beggars 
privileged by the Dba to seize 
food from the market ; they pay 
an annual tribute for it. 

okpg [ / ] side ; okp-ugbo [ / ' ] side, 
edge of a farm; okp-sze [.^J 
bank of a river; okp-ode [/*] 
edge, margin of a road; cf. 
ur-ods ['**] "the passable part 
of the road". 

okpelobo [....] "quick in catch- 
ing": a name for the leopard; 
cf. obo [/]; v. skps [..]. 

okpstu [ . / ] mistaken handling of 
a matter resulting in spoiling it ; 
misfortune caused by a mistake ; 
cf. Jekri skpstu [./]; v. obodidi 


okpo [.J piles; haemorrhoids. 

okporhu [ . . . ] "the crier " : a name 
for the cock; okporhu okao 
[ " ] "first cock-crow": early 
morning; cf. kpe [/], urhu [..]. 

okpo [/] staff (for walking); okp- 
adows ['\ ] crutches; v. ovivi 

[ J.I 

okpoi5a [...] "helper": servant; 
employee; cf. kpa [J], ooa 


olema [...] ' ' f uf u-cooker ' ' : name 
of a piece of fufu which a man 
gives to the woman who has 
cooked it, after his ihana [..'] 
(sacrifice to his father). He 


himself takes the first piece, 
saying : ihana [ m /], then he offers 
the second one to the woman 
with the words : mi-olema [.'..] 
"take the olema". 

oleCi [...] " thing-cooker " : female 
servants (prospective wives), 
cooking for a chief; cf. le ['], 
e ™ v. ibi-ukoni [."..]. 

okla [,/] doorless passage in Bini 
houses leading from one iku 
[,W to another; usually ooi 
olda [ " ' ] small passage ; cf 
la i [•], 

obza [ # J a kind of dance per- 
formed at the Dba's coronation ; 
the obza [ _ ] people who come 
from Oka [/] (?), on the road to 
Sakpoba, are the only men to 
sing historical songs at the 

omada[ # .J (pi. e-) " ada-bearers " 
a group of small boys living at 
the Sguae [_] who bear the 
Dba's ceremonial sword ada [ " ] 
(but cf. ukwsbe [. . J) in front of 
him when he goes out ; formerly 
they went about naked, v. 
rhua [J]; c/.mui ['], ada ["]; 
v. ibisruya [./.]. 

omas [_] old man (or woman); 
v. xi [J]. 

oma(o)oaei3i [ ] (no pi.) ''show- 
somebody-things ' 1 : teacher ; cf 
ma i [J], ooa [/%], em 
v. oruooaeoi [ ]. 

omaxe [..J (pi. in i- is not always 
used) potter; pots are made by 
women only ; cf ma 4 [ ' ] , axe [ / ] . 

ometo [ ## J a yam, the rope of 
which coils considerably; cf. 
mo ['], eto [/]. 

omo iho [.\J] "children I want " : 
an sbo [ J (human-made idol) 
constructed by women on a path 
leading to a river, in order that 


women and children, when going 
to the river, may pray there 
for the increase of children in 
the village. In its construction 
ulelefe [ ##> J (ant-heap) and 
unwerhiota [*.\J (a tree) are 

omiarale [ ] nickname for peo- 
ple making it their^ occupation 
to interfere with the doings of 
others; cf mie [J], arale ['J,]. 
omiouafa [ ] Saviour (Akugbe) ; 

c/. mi£[>], o«a [.*%], fa [*]. 
omize [ _ ] woman baking native 
"rice"; "rice-baker"; cf ma 4 

omo [ # ] (pi. e -) (1) son; child; 

om-eha [/•] three children (e- is 
not used with numbers); omo 
n-ibise [,/\] the child I have 
borne ; om-iwu [.*%.] son (in dis- 
tinction from "grandson" or 
"great-grandson", v. iwu 2 
[..]);^om-obo [/•] "child of 
hand": baby, v. enws [."%]; 
om-oto [/\] "son of ground": 
native, inhabitant (of a par- 
ticular village or country) . omo, 
not ooi, is used with bis ['] "to 
bear", but it is not used with 
possessive pronouns, which are 
used with ooi [/]. (2) appel- 
lation for the Dba, Ezomo ['*'], 
and some chiefs (8hi oba [."']; 
Ihama ['/], and all the mem- 
bers of the Uzama [/.]), when 
referring to them, e.g. omo 
r-owa [/\] is the "son" at 
home? The term is very re- 
spectful, was said to mean 
"free-born"; it is mostly used 
in their own house, for, in the 
presence of the Dba, only the 
Ezomo has the right to be call- 
ed omo (besides the Dba); v. 
d-omo [' ], which, however, is 

in general use. (3) fruit; om- 
erha [ '•] fruit of a tree. 

omobe [/.] "harmful child"; 
rascal child ; never-do-well. 

omuihs [_] (no pi. form) carrier; 
cf. mu 1 ['], ihe [.']. 

ona [..] (pi. e-) this (one); these 
(in nominal use, v. na [.]); ona 
no [ * ] it is this one (ona ad [ . / ] 
is used as the end of a whole 
sentence, such as : ode n-atu w ee 
ona xi [ /] lit. "the way it 
is done is this") ; ona no [ . ,"\] is 
it this one? The reduplicated 
forms, onona, and enena [/J, 
respectively, are used as well 
(more emphatic). 

one [ ] the river crocodile (same 
as 'agbaka [."%.]); this is the 
dangerous kind (v. syuxu [.%.]); 
cf. Yor. oni [ .]. 

Dni ['/] (pi. e-j that one; those; 
in nominal use ; cf. ni [ J ] . 

Dnya [ '] a praise-name of the 
Ezomo ["*]; on y a n-ogi-uzsbu 
[./'•/] Onya, the ruler of 
Uzsbu; v. Uti ['.]. 

onye ["] a tree, Uapaca heude- 
lotii; its roots stand out of 
the ground "like a gripping 

onyeus [_] happiness ; pleasure ; 
onysus se oe o-iho ^-oooxa ve bke 

[ " ,.'\] 1 was ha ppy ( Ut 

happiness reached me) when 
I heard that my wife had been 
delivered of a child, 
onyunua [.J] surprise ; em w onyu; 
nua uwatu w ere [.".J it is 
a surprising thing what you 
have done to him! (in a bad 
sense on account of the ste 
v. osexsrhe [....]: adding 
insult to injury); cf. nya 1 [*], 

unu [.*], rua [/]. 
ooo ['] an old formula of greeting, 

same as doo [ ' ] ; it is still used 
by a few old men. 
opaxarha [/"] boastful (Egh. 


opsxsrhs [....] "palm-oil chop" 
consisting of yam, ground cray- 
fish, ground pepper, oil and salt ; 
meat may be added, but it is 
not necessary ; it is thus different 
from what is generally called a 
A palm-oil chop"; v. e6i [."%]. 

opia [' ] matchet; "cutlass"; v. 
ixu [7\]. Occurs also in Ibo. 

oporhipo [..*%.] a tree > sterculia 

Dra [ * . ] the Dra country. 


[...] (PL »-) bearer of a 
title; titled man; uni-onegie 

et-ifa xi ["...;/] they are a 
family of title-bearers (many 
members of this family have 
titles); cf. te 1 ['], egie [..]. 
orioue [ ] foreigner; v. orhut3unye 

oriuxu [ . . . ] 11 heritage-eater ' ' ; 

heir; cf. te 1 ['], uxu [..]. 
orho [..] muddy, swampy soil; 
wetter than oro^o [...]. 

[.J "purification" from 
state of widowhood, usually 
effected by sexual intercourse; 

V. Z8 I [']. 

Drhogba ['J.] name of an Dba, 
probably represented on the 
brass plate that is reproduced 
in R.D. xvi, 4. 
orhore [ * ] waterfall ; sz-orhore no 
[ ' it is a brook (or river) 
with a waterfall; cf rho 1 [J], 

orhoi3o [.'.] worry; trouble; v. 

ukpokpo [...]. 
orhu [ M cluster of yam ropes 
and ' branches hanging down 
from the top of a yam pole 
(ikpssi [...] or sjc [.']). 


°t a [.*] °cro cut and dried, then 
pounded to powder : thus it lasts 
from three to five months, and 
can be taken as provision when 
travelling (otherwise it would 
only last two weeks) ; this dried 
ocro is used for soups. 

Ora i [* ] a god of the Dba; v. Dsa 

Dra 2 [ ' ] a village situated on the 
If on Road, ten miles from 
Benin City. 

ore i [/] (also: sre, ere, -£-) a 
particle emphasising the word 
it follows, e.g. ebe sr-itie J] 
"it is a book that I am read- 
ing"; this particle is also used 
in stories, etc., at the beginning 
of a sentence, in order to link 
it to the preceding sentence; 
it is also used with a following 
no [*] in the meaning "that," 
e.g. ore no [/*] that's it; cf. 
te 2 [']; v. ni [J], oni [ m J]. ^ 

°t e 2 [."]> [ J (also £ t e ) possessive 
pron. 3rd pers. sgl.: ''his, her, 
its". After nasalised vowels, ofe 
(§fe) is used. 

orere [. . J a kind of bean. 

D P [..] paralysis; orp kiui w e 
[...')] "paralysis has struck 
him": he is paralysed. 

op [ m J] a cactus, Hugonia platy- 
sepala; it is also called urhuaro 
[..'] "eye-blinder", because its 
latex blinds a man, if it touches 
his eye. 

opgio [ #> J a rattle composed of 
a piece of wood carved with 
grooves in which hard pellets 

Orpma [ . . J name of a river ; it has 
the epithet : Orpma n-onyi k-oku 
(ke) [...V.*] "Orpma near the 
sea" (though there is no other 
river of the same name) . 


°r ue [/\] (pi. 1-) another wife of 
the same husband; co-wife 
"mate"; oruex5£[;' '],vtU>-*[.'J]$ 
oru-ore [."'] my, your, her, co- 
wife; ooi^orue my co- 
wife's child, 
oruero [ # > ] a temporary lodger in 
one's house ; a man who, having 
no house of his own, stays at 
somebody else's house; cf ru 
VI ero [/]. 
oruero [_ J a cunning man (or 

woman); cf ru ['], ero [/]. 
orusbo [_J heathen, the pure 
Bini word for ikeferi [..."] 
(Yor., Hausa) which is, how- 
ever, said to be more in use 
nowadays, except in the bush- 
villages ; cf. ru [ * ] , ebo [ , J , iruebo 


°tuiro [...] thinker; cf ro 
it© [..]. 

oruosa [ ] debtor; v. okaruosa 

oruoCaeui[ ] " teach-somebody- 

things": teacher; cf. rus [J], 
ooa [/%], eui v. oma(o)Ca- 

eCi [...J- 
ofo [/] same as sfioi [/J (world 

of the dead). It is said to be a 
word from the Akurs dialekt of 
Yoruba, but to have been used 
in Bini for a long time; cf. 
Yor. oru [ •]. 
Ofomila [ # \J god of If a; cf. Yor. 

orumila ; v. orpks [ # # J. 
osa [/] a kind of creeper; the 
root is about as big as a yam; 
the leaf is called eb-osa [/•]. 
Osa [\] title of a chief living at 
Idut>-igu w erpuo [_ J (brass- 
smiths' quarter). He used to 
drink the blood of a human 
victim (specially killed for him) 
and to bathe in it during an 
annual festival. 

osa [ ] a big ape (chimpanzee?); 

v. aiazi [' YL eme [."%]• 
osama [ . . . ] " plaque-caster 1 ' ; 
brass-worker; c/. sa ['], ama 

ose [ J (i) friend; ogu w osi w ore gua 

o-ila-owa [ /."."] he was 

chatting with his friend when 
I entered the house. (2) mis- 
tress; lover. 

osegbe [_.] in osegb-osegbe [ / .Y] 
turn by turn ; cf. se 1 [ ' ] . 

ossba [ # / ] a cloth worn by women 
when working at home: it goes 
from the waist to the knees (not 
identical with ooi w ukp5 [/ ] 
which is only an underdo th). 

ossgba [ . . . ] pistol. 

oseIe ['/] (also assle) an insect 
similar to a locust (?) said to 
appear during the dry season; 
eaten by children mostly ; adeks 
[ / ] is said to be the female, and 

ogoro [./]' *-he ma ^ e - 
Dseoeds [.*.'] name of an Oba, said 
to be represented on R.D. 

viii, 3. 

osexerhE [....] great damage (e.g. 
such as taking a poor man's last 
belongings, or, stealing things, 
and escaping on the owner's 
bicycle) ; adding insult to injury; 
oru o-DSsxsrhe [.'*...] he caused 
me great damage. 

osierha [ . . . ] " hauling-boy (s) " ; a 
timbermen's expression; cf. si 1 
□ ,erha[/],isierha [...]. 

osiukoko [....] (1) (pipe) smoker. 
(2) comet : its halo is compared 
with the smoke of a pipe (but 
there is no myth about it) ; cf. si 1 
□,ukoko ['..]. 

osiwu [ ] cutter of tribal marks ; 

cf. SZ2 ['], iwu [..]. 

osobiti [..J shovel; spade; cf. 
Engl, shovel. 

osuoleya [....] " leader of prison- 
ers": prison- warder; cf. ole^a 


ota [/] speech; talk; conversa- 
tion; cf. ta [*]. 

ota [_] a squirrel. 

ots ['*"'] a drink obtained by an 
infusion of red plantains; cf. 
kp-ots [ * * ] . 

Ot£ [.Y (P L e ") W relative 

(general term, applies to all 
persons belonging to the same 
egbee [.Y]); "brother". ("Bro- 
ther" is exactly oui w erha [.'*'] 
and oo-iye [."].) 3t£t5e[/']my 
relative (male and female) ; ot-u£ 
[/] your relative; oti^erha oe 
[.".'] my paternal uncle (usu- 
ally, may also be used for 
"cousin"); ot-iye vz [//] my 
maternal uncle; ooi oti^erha Ce 
["••'] my paternal cousin 
(most exact term). (2) "com- 
panion" (to non-relatives as 
well), used in the greeting koyo- 
ti Se ['••«] hallo, my friend ! 

ot£i)£ [ _ J " word-sayer ' ' ; speaker 
(not any rank); cf. ta [*], eoe 
[..], oguaEOE [...]. 

otigEdu [....] tree-feller; gang of 
tree-fellers (timbermen's expres- 
sion); cf. to 1 ['], ig£du ['"]. 

DtiooaEzo [ ] "calling-man-to- 
lawsuit": plaintiff; cf. tie [J], 
ova [/\], ezd ["]. 

otoku [ t tm ] man (or men) wielding 
the measure lines: "line-men"; 
timbermen's expression; cf. ta 1 

n,oku [•.], itoku [...]. 

oto [_] rust. 

otomiyoyo [*.'..] a praise-name of 
the god Dxwahs [./.]; its 
meaning is unknown; cf. iyoyo 

[...](?), yoyoyo [...](?). 

vaf ao£ [ , . . . ] butcher ; cf. va 1 [ ], 
afaoE [/.]. 


ovasara [....] sawyer; gang of 
sawyers; cf va i ['], asara [/J. 

[..J] a. traveller who 
breaks his journey somewhere 
in order to sleep; cf va [J], 

0iE [J]. 

Ovia [/] (i) name of a river. 

(2) name of the god associated 
with the above-named river. 

(3) a society worshipping the 
god Ovia; its members have to 
undergo a three or four months' 
initiation away from home; the 
members perform masquerade- 
dances imitating the twisting of 
the creeper akke [ ] which 
is sacred to the god ; the society 
has a secret language of its own ; 

v. Ekpo[..],iyef],odede['.J, 
ekeze [./]. 

ovis [/] slave; the word is used 
with tree names following in the 
genitive relationship in order to 
denote other trees: ovi-gdu [/'J 
Gar cinia poly antha; ov-inyi [/*] 
Erythrophloem (guineense and 
mict •antha) ; Dv-Itue [ # '\] Harun- 
gana madagascariensis; wood is 
stronger than that of itue [*\], 
but it has no red latex as itue has ; 
ovi-oka [/"] (F.D. list only) 
Fillacopsis discophora; ovi-unie 
[/"] same as ayako [_']; F.D. 
list has Xylopia quintasii. 

ovo [/] reluctance; reluctant; 
redupl. ovo w ovo [/'•] reluc- 
tantly; cf. igbovo [ ], gbe 1 

ooa [ . . ] a position in the ogwsga 
[ . ]-divination (o.c.c.c.) ; cf. 
Yor. obara [...]. 

ooehe ['/] another; another one; 
ouehe ona xi ['.*..*] another 
one is this; irayarhi-ouehe re 

[.V.* ,Y] I am going to bring 
another one. 

™°xa L\] (pl. ibiska [J,]) 
(1) child; ouox-uoi [.'.'], ooox- 
oxuo [,',,] " child-woman ' ' : 
girl; Duox-okpia [.\J] " child- 
man": boy. (There is only a 
short nasalised glide in front of 
the -o.) (2) (with possessive 
pronouns only) wife; oooxa vz 
[..."] my wife. (3) (only in the 
pl. usually) servant (only with 
possessive pronoun) . 

D ^a [."%] (pl. e-) man; person; 
oCaikoua [ # \\| everybody; 
ooa rhokpa [ ."Y ..] (with negative 
verb) nobody; ova rhokpa ysre 
[ A . . \] nobody shall come ! oi5a 
n-ofe (pl. et3a n-ife) [..'"%] a rich 
man; oo-egbe [/•] an intimate 
friend; oo-eue [/\J "a man of 
palaver": a troublesome man 
(but v. ofieoe [/J "madman"); 
oo-otu [ ."V ] member of a society, 
v. ooi [ ']; oo-oroho [,'\.] an 
idle man ; oua n-edo [ # / •] a Bini 
man; v. oui [*/], (e)d-. 

ouababe [....] (pl. e-) a man who 
practises ababe [/J; a witch; 
cf oe [Jl v. aze [/]. 

due [/] a form of the objective 
(and possessive?) pronoun ue 
(1st pers. sgl.) found after yi ['] 
"(to put) on, to"; idiom, orhi- 
Ewuy-ooE [,.'..'] he putacoaton 
me, i.e. he put the blame on me. 

oueoe [/J madman ; cf euEtte [ / ] ; 
different from ou-eoe [/\] "a 
troublesome man ' ' . 

owa [ * * ] epilepsy. 

Dwa 1 [ . J an Ika village on Benin 
territory, near the Orhiouo [\ ] 

Dwa 2 [ . . ] castrated animal (a goat 
if nothing is added); £w-owa 
[.%.] castrated goat; Emil-owa 
VS.], £xwi-owa [.'..] castrated 
bull : ox (instead of the genitive 


a relative sentence smila n-aware 

is possible); aw-owa 
[,%.] castrated dog (dogs are 
mostly castrated) (agbo [.J 
"ram" was given with the rela- 
tive construction only); d-owa 
gu ue o-eki ['...'.] buy me a 
castrated (scil. goat) on the 
market! cf. wa 2 [J]. 

owaeoi [ 1 men selected out of 
each otu [.J, who have the 
duty of distributing any food, 
etc., obtained by that otu as a 
whole, among its members. 
There are also men who do the 
same for the whole village : they 
divide communal property such 
as the bag of a hunt or money 
given to the whole village such 
as shares of the taxes and royal- 
ties for timber, etc. at ogw-edio 
[/•], the meeting-place of the 
eiders; cf. wa 1 [J], eui 

owaise [...] (pi. e-) young at- 
tendants of the oh-6su [/*], the 
priest of Osu [/], the cleverest 
of whom become priests them- 
selves in due time ; their duty is 
to sweep the compound in the 
morning and to "revive" (v. 
wa [J]) the charms (exwae u- 
oko [* / J) at the shrine by spit- 
ting chewed kola and alligator- 
pepper on them. Besides, they 
fetch herbs, etc. from the bush 
and prepare medicines from 
them ; they dance at the festival 
called eh-osu [/•] (eho [/]); cf. 
wa 1 [J]; v. Osu [/]. 

owara [...] (1) straight; er- 
iri na magu tte so-re 1-owara 

da □) "the 

knotty spot in this creeper does 
not allow me to split it in its 
length" (e.g. in order to tie 
yams to the stack (v. ha^ema 

[.'.]) or Y am branches to the 
poles {v. n-ema [*.]) with the two 
parts thus obtained) . (2) period; 
o-owat-Eds-hoho [.".'.] for (the 
period of) a whole day {v. ohoho 

[.'.])• (3) (o)-Dwat-okpa [.."] 

(a) at the same time : od-ehia v>- 
owar-okpa (ds [']) he 
bought (it) all at the same time ; 

(b) suddenly; at once; iwaf-of- 
owar-okpa [/..."] I knew him 
at once. 

owegbe [_.] "the strong one": 
a tree found in the grassy plains 
(ato [/%]); it has leathery 
leaves; cf. wo ['], egbe [/]. 

owee [..] (1) male ; om-owse [/Y] 
male child, boy (used by old 
men) ; v. ukpo [/]. (2) a strong, 
robust man. 

Dwse [ # %] farmer (the best word, 
and generally used by the old 
people) ; some young people mis- 
takenly think that it only 
applies to the Dba's farmers, and 
use, therefore, ogbugbo [...]. 

owews [/*] a mortar in shape of 
a funnel; it is fixed to the 
ground, filled with powder and 
lit by a fuse; used in second 
burials, mainly of chiefs. 

owews [,J.] course of an un- 
finished sentence. Seems to 
occur only with x>- "in", in an 
idiom given under s-ukp£ [/]; 

Cf. WEWEWE ['"], WE [/]. 

owd [.J a big bat-like animal. 

oxa ["] the cotton tree, Ceiba 
pentandra; the seeds are used 
for stuffing pillows (ukohut3u 


oxa white ants; termites, 
oxae '[*.] (1) hero; brave man; 
strong man ; oxa-evg okpia na xi 

[".'.J.'] tn i s man is a champion 
in wrestling. (2) also e.g. a man 


who is able to hold a big family 
together and look after them, 
oxas [/\] porcupine (?); "hedge- 
hog"; oxas rhierhi-unwDOE gbe 

[ A . . . ] porcupine is very tasty 
as soup, lit. " makes soup tasty 

oxasoe (pi. e-) "palaver- 

decider": chief; it applies now- 
adays to "warrant-chiefs" 
mostly, i.e. such as take part in 
the jurisdiction of the country; 
oxasfe is not as important as 
°S ie [. J " ruler", though all the 
ogies are exaeoe at present in 
their quality as members of the 
Council; cf. xa [J], et5s [_]. 

oxe i [ ' ] stick at the back of a 
yam stack (or rather rack, eru 
[.']) sustaining the ugas (strip- 
ped palm branches) which are 
tied to the main poles (utoyoto). 

oxe 2 [/] hunter's ambush in 
the bush : the ground is cleaned 
and strewn with ashes on ac- 
count of the visibility (oxe is 
used at night-time); bananas 
are put in the middle to entice 
animals, esp. civet-cats. The 
hunter sits on egba [/], a stick 
with two perches tied across; 

cf. X£ [J]. 

oxg [..] (pl- e ~) anybody going to, 
or coming from the market: 
(a) passer-by; (b) trader; cf 
xie ["](?); v. oduski J. 

oxsrhs [ J a young palm tree (if 
nothing is added, the oil palm 
is understood); oxsrh-ivi [/'J 
young coco-nut palm; cf Jekri 
skste [/J. 

oxiekus [_*] selling on credit; cf 
xis ["]; v. odskue [_*]. 

oxd [ 9 J] bad deed; cf. xd [J]. 

oxoe [ ' J worm ; oxo-to [ * J earth- 
worm (found in dust-heaps; 
different from ikolo ['.']); oxo- 

erha ['**•] "wood-worm": lar- 
vae of wood-beetles (?); oxo-ehe 
[**'] "menstruation worm": 
pains before menstruation. 

oxooo [/J a sick person; cf 
xuoui [/]. 

oxoxo [ ' ] fowl; hen; oxoxd v-ibiz 
[.*;•] "hen and chicken": the 
Pleiades (N.W.Th.). 

oxue ["] a tree, Brachystegia 
eurycoma (? F.D. list has ok- 
wen) ; very hardy, like oxixa [ " J . 

oxue [/] expensive food ; " dandy- 
chop " ; uri^oxue gbe [."*•] you 
eat too much costly food ! 

oxueniezo [ _ ] " law-suit-answer- 
er": defendant; cf. xusnis [/], 
ezo ["]; v. tie [/]. 

Dxwahs [,JJ\ (i) a river. (2) an 
ihs said to have been a great 
hero and magician during the 
reign of the Oba Swuare ['-J. 
He then transformed himself 
into the river bearing the same 
name. His cult is one of the 
most important cults in Benin; 
v. ahiaoE ['\J. 

oxws [..] parrot ; among parrots 
there are believed to be some 
that report anything they may 
see in a house to witches; v. 
eba [/]. 

oxwexws [\J a thorny creeper, 
oyara [./] a man who is careless 
in behaviour or untidy, e.g. with 
remains of spilt food on his 
garments. The reproach of being 
an oyara is mostly made towards 
poor people ; oyara w uxi, ye u-uy- 
unwofe fu-egbe hia [.."• / * . . . / # ] 
"you are an untidy man, iook 
how you have taken (ya [']) 
soup smeared (fus ["]) all (over) 
the body ! " : look how you have 
smeared yourself all over with 
soup ! 

oyo [*'] a number upwards of 
seven; in games, e.g. ise n-ata 


oyo [ , t ] the small boys (under ten 
years) at the Dvia [/]-society; v. 
odio [/]. 

oyugbo [..,] farmer; cf yo [*], 
ugbo ["], ogbugbo [..J. 

oyunugie [ ] " mouth-sender " : 

employer of people working on 
a house; the word occurs only 
in a song accompanying the 
treading of mud ; cf. ya i ['], unu 

[.']. gie [*]. 

Dza [ ] a name; Oza was a 
wicked, but powerful man whose 
wives did not dare to run away 
from his ill-treatment during his 
life- time, but were glad when he 
died; v. eve [/]. 

oza [/] a strip of cloth used to 
fasten oui ukpo [."..] (under- 
cloth) by women; men either 
wrap it tightly, or wear ugbeku 
[...] (belt). 

ozedu [ ( - m ] interpreter ; cf. zs 4 [ ] , 
edu [.*]. 

ozsta [_'] (untrue, exaggerating) 
rumours ; ' ' guess-saying cf 
zs i [*], ta [*]. 

ozevu; ozoivu [ #t J "seed-yam- 
picker": a name for the rat 
ofl^oto [/..]; cf zo 1 [J], ivu [ . J . 

oziegbe [ m m J " endurer ' ' : a name ; 
cf zi (}\ egbe [/]. 

ozioie [ _ ] " lonely-maker ' ' : name 
of a charm employed by thieves 
to keep the place where they 
are going to steal lonely, or at 
least to effect their not being 
noticed; cf. ze i ['], iois [/]. 

Dzolua, or Dzoloa [ # J name of an 
Oba, possibly represented on 
R.D. xvi, 2, 3; xix, 4. 

ozukpogieva [ ] (1) the second. 

(2) the second member of the 

four village elders, the edio 
n-en£ [ # /\ J, whose senior is 
the odiowere [.'.']; ozukpogieha 

[ ] the third elder; ozuk- 

pogienE [ ] the fourth elder; 

cf. ze i ['], ukpogieya [/..]. 

ozuo [ t J fool; v. ko [']. 

ozuwa [\ J hair-pin. 

papa [/] (1) to pat (e.g. a dog); 
oy-obo papa i;-uhuuu [..*...*.] he 
is patting him on the head. 
(2) to dab a liquid on some- 
thing, e.g. a medicine on some 
part of the body. 

papaapa [ #t J describes small 
things that are flat and smooth 
(e.g. planks). 

papaapa [ _ ] noise made by a slack 

p£rh£ [/] to be flat. 

psrhEE [..] flat; oye psrhE [/.J 
it is flat. 

pErsp£r£p£r£ [".."] describes the 
flight of a small bird (e.g. asssE 
[*/]), moving with short in- 

p££££E£E££ [ ] describes the 

flight of small birds (from a 
pigeon downwards). 

piapia [J J] describes the sound 
of a whip; ofi w £t-asa piapia 
[ / * • 'J J] he whipped him. 

prrrr [J describes the flight of 
medium-size birds (parrots, 
pigeons, doves) at a short dis- 

pupupu [ mm J (short u's) describes 
the flight of a bird about to die, 
or of a domestic fowl, i.e. rather 
an effort to fly; oti pupupu 
[ " 1 it flutters. 

l • • • • J 

ra [ ' ] to rub a part of one's body 
with a finger previously dipped 
into a "medicine" or sacrificial 


blood. This is done after sacri- 
fices to erha [ " ] : the senior son 
as well as the oka^egbee [,"\] 
with the elders of the family rub 
the big toes of their right feet 
(which stand for one's male 
ancestors), the oka^egbse and 
the elders doing so in order to 
give all the family ancestors 
their share. When this has been 
done everybody touches his 
forehead with a finger dipped in 
blood in order to give his head 
(v. uhuou [.".]) part of the 
sacrifice. (This is also done after 
a sacrifice made to a deity.) ofi w 
obo y-esagie rhie ra [ . . # \'JJ * ] 
"he is dipping his hand into 
blood taking rubbing (his fore- 
head) ". When sacrificing to 
one's head (at igw£ [,.]) (which 
is combined with a fufu-sacri- 
fice to one's guardian spirit as 
it is forbidden to kill anything 
for the shi [..]), one rubs the 
middle of one's forehead with 
blood, saying: ehae us kokooko 
[ *•••] "my forehead strong", 
then the back of the neck is rub- 
bed for the shi with the words: 
ugusr-ugu-ehi rue VJ.'.A 
"you gu£ and gus your shi", 
then both ears are touched : eho 
t u£h-£t5ata [..//Y] "your ear 
may hear the truth". The heart 
is touched by somebody saying : 
ud-us gb-£gi L.J"] " your heart 
may be firm the waist : £ku w 
agbo n-oma s-uo-to J J.] 
"may waist of good life reach 
your ground" : may your happi- 
ness be firmly grounded; the 
knees : uyud-igu-£U£ ya [ / / '/\] 
"may you not fall on the pala- 
ver-knee ' ' : may you not have to 
kneel (i.e. to beg anybody on your 

knees) for the sake of a palaver. 
At last, the process is applied 
to the toes, with the words 
uyuxia rhi-Eite [."/.] " may you 
not go and take palaver" : may 
you not have trouble through 
going on a journey (?). ra is also 
used of rubbing oneself with a 
powdered medicine (ebo [ t "\j) as 
a remedy against bad spirits, or 
as a love medicine, 
ra i [J] (i) to catch (from the 
air); ora w ugbe n-ifi gi w £e 
[..'." 'W he caught the stone 
which I threw at him. (2) to 
join, in a song; cf. urau-ihua 


ra 2 [/] to prepare a cooked 
coco-yam for palm-oil chop. 

f a 3 [J] to cross; ora w £Z£ [ ] 
he is crossing a river; v. gbe 

ra [J] (1) to be warm (of soup, 
or the body). (2) to warm up 
(a soup); ora w unwoo£ [./.J he 
warms up the soup. (3) to be 
healthy (with egbe [ *] "body", 
v. 1); egbe ra-fg '[.7-] lit. 
"body brightens him": he is 
healthy. (4) to be bright (day, 
weather) ; £d£ n-£f£ raf £ [ # ^ t J J 
"the day of to-day is bright ,; : 
to-day is a fine day. 

re 1 [*] to be in a certain place; 
to live at a certain place ; or-eoa 
[/\] he is there; or-£do [/•] he 
is (lives) in Benin; ir-agb£d£ 
[//] I live at Agb£d£, v. ye [']. 
r-o [V] to be in it (at it); also 

equivalent to the English " there 
is"; iyami-eka d£ ra? £, oro 
['"J..\'J] can I get akara 
to buy? Yes, there are (some); 
okp£re n-okeyaro [,J.""J] it 
is a long time that he has-been 


at it (i.e. in some job); n-odio 
n-oro the oldest one of 

them (lit. "who there are"); 
n-orow-us ro ra [.*'*.] lit. 
"what is your own (scil. con- 
cern), is it there (or, in it)?": 
is there anything of your own 
concern: is it your business? 
(as a rebuke) . 

re 2 ['] to come (not used in the 
ipf., v. de[J]);v. yoi[']. 

re [J] (also rei) (i) to be far; 
Isiloko re gbe Siluko is 

very far; (2) to be a long time 
(ago) (only in the perf. which 
can be orere as well as ore^i ( !)) ; 
orere n-os-unu it is a 

long time since it happened. 

ri 1 ['] to tread mud or palm- 
kernels; iterat. rilo [/] to 
massage; orilo t5-egbe [./.'] he 
massaged my body; v. mama 

[/], yaif]. 

ri 2 ['] (1) to knot together; 
r-iri na ms [//] tie me these 
ropes together! (2) to make a 
noose; r-iri na me [ ' '] also: 
make a noose in this rope! 
(but for "to make a knot in" 
mu [*] ri ['] is used). Iterat. 
rilo [/]: (a) to knot many ropes 
together; « (b) in ril-iri to 
make nooses in ropes; and (c) 
(preceded by mu) to make knots 
in ropes; ril-iri na ms [ # //] tie 
these (many) ropes together ! 

ri; cf. also re 1 [']. 

ria 1 [J] (1) to graze; to browse 
(of an animal). (2) in ria [J] 
ixi [_] to take revenge; oria 
u-ixi [_*.] he is taking revenge 
on me; cf. re 1 ['] (?); eria [/], 
iriaixi [...], iriaskps [...], arias- 

mila [....]. 
ria 2 [J] to expound, analyse an 
oracle (iha [..]). 

riaria 1 [.*] to grow (of a plantain 
fruit) . 

riaria 2 [/] to go around, mostly 
with hope of sharing food. 

rie U] I 1 ) t0 go away; orie [J] 
(a) he is going away; (b) he is 
gone. (2) to go; the place where 
the subject is going to follows 
the verb ; only used in the ipf., 

yo 1 □> e.g. ori-sdo 
he is going to Benin. Idiom.: 

ori-EOO n-a w iwua [ " J .] "he 

is going to a country which is 
not taboo ", i.e. where everybody 
must go ; where to go is not for- 
bidden to anybody: he is dead; 
said of a "big" man; a respect- 
ful term, ri-eria [..']* to go 
grazing, ri-efioi "to go 

to EfiSi": to die; v. yo 1 ['], 
xia [']. 

rieris [/] to turn something over 
the fire; e.g. to turn a yam or 
plantain with the hand over a 
small fire in order to roast it; 
ya rier-inya ni ms n-oysgis 

LA/'-. g° an d turn that 
yam for me (so) that it does not 
burn! cf. werie [/]. 
ris ['] to become, be smooth; 
oris [/] it is getting smooth; 
arise [."%] it is smooth; cf. 
ris [J]- 

ris [J] to smooth ; oris w erha [ # t /] 
he is smoothing a plank ; ori-ore 
[ * ] he is smoothing it; cf. 
ris [']. 

risris [.J lukewarm (of water); 
ofu re risris [.'•_] it is luke- 
warm ; v. rhioo [ ■ ] . 

risrisrie [...] yellow (not of fire); 
used with the verb ba [J]; v. 
rusrusrus [...]. 

r-iri [/];c/. ri 2 [']. 

ro [J] to be durable, of any 
breakable thing, e.g. a pot. 



ro i [J] to bear a weight; oro oe 
u-itota nya-f e [ t J t ' \ J % ] it bore 
me when I sat on it, e.g. a plank 
or rope. 

ro 2 [^] to stir (e.g. porridge); 

oro^akasa [ "] he is stirring 

the akasa [. /]. 

ro [V]; tf. re i [']. 

rua [J] to push (with hand, foot, 
or the whole body, but not in 
a magical sense); irua-we [.„/.] 
"I pushed foot", i.e. I hurt 
my foot by knocking against 
a stone, etc. rua [J] fua [*] 
to push away; irua-re fua 
[.J* J] I pushed him away; 
v. sua [J], keke [/]. 

ruoruoruo [ * * * ] stammering ; ogua 
ruoruoruo [,J'"] he is stam- 
mering; v. b-svs [\], 

(e)rh- a possible, but rare, alter- 
native to the particle (e)t- ; used 
perhaps only before pronouns 
of the 2ndpers. sgl. ; rh-uwsoexia 

are you going, too? 
rha [J] to steal. The verbal noun 

urhaoe is not used, 
rha [/] to untie; rha [J] hi [\] 
to detach; irha-fs hi [.,/•>] 
I detached it. rh-aro [J t ] to 
become, be civilised (lit. "to be 
unfolded as to the eyes"); cf. 
irharo [...]. 
rharhaarha [•'•] loud. 

[/] (i) to touch; idiom.: 
iyarhaoe [//] lit. "I take to 
touch": slave; the etymologi- 
cal connection seems doubtful. 
(2) to dip in, e.g. fufu into a 
soup before eating it; mi-ema 
ya rhau-iinwoite ms [ ' ' ] lit. 
"take (mie [J]?) fufu" to take 
dip (into) soup give me!" dip 
some fufu into the soup and give 
it me! 

rhe [J] an auxiliary verb in- 
dicating that the action ex- 
pressed by the main verb stands 
in a concessive relation to the 
rest of the sentence ; orherha (58, 
ya iyayixu w £e gie [.VV ' Jl 
"though he has stolen (from) 
me, who shall I drive him to 
(lit. send)?" used if the culprit 
belongs to the same family so 
that one cannot pursue him. 

rhere [/] farewell (from rherhere 
[,/] "arrive in time"); said to 
a man leaving the speaker, or 
met on the road, going in the 
opposite direction. 

rherhe [/] an auxiliary verb in- 
dicating that the main action is 
carried out in due time; irhe- 
rheru w se [, / * \] I did it in time; 
e.g. as answer to the question: 
urherhepos w ebe ni yi [..''•. J'] 
did you post that letter in 

rhia ['] to be, become spoilt; 
orhiae [ # *\] it is spoilt; also 
orhia [,'J] (containing a [J], 

i.e. rua [']); cf. rhia [J]. 

rhia [J] to spoil; to squander 
(rhia w iyo [."]); also rhia [J] 
rua (or, a) [']; cf. rhia [*]. 

rhiamarhiama [ — ] lean; also 
used of a thin plantain; used 
with the verb ye [']; v. kagu- 

kagu ['•'•]. 
rhie [J] to take; v. mu ['] which 
seems to refer to heavier things : 
"to lift up", and was said to 
refer specially to things con- 
taining grains or liquids, not to 
whole things like rhie; v. further 
ya 1 [ ' ] which implies ' ' to take in 
order to use"; orhi-sre [."'] he 
took it; as answer to a question, 
e.g. Combinations with verbs: 
rhie [J] ba [J] to add. rhie 


[J] fi ['] to (take and) throw 
something, rhie [J] fua ['] to 
throw away, off; ya rhie C-ukp5 
fua u-iri ['*♦../] who threw my 
cloth off from the rope? (rhie 
kua is not possible, as rhie im- 
plies taking one entire object, 
and kua, a collective object like 
a liquid or grains, v. however 
mu [*]). rhie [/] gb-axua [/] 
to save; more idiomatic than 
rhie [J] hi [%].; instead of rhie, 
ya [*] may be used here; orh- 
iyo ni gb-axua xs ezo n-ati-£re 
[. J "<] he saved that 
money for the law-suit to which 
he was summoned, rhie [J] gb- 
oto [ \ ] to knock the ground with 
something ; irhi-unwsrhie gb-oto 
[..'.'*.] 1 knocked the whip to 
the ground (in order to frighten 
somebody), rhie [J] hi [*\] 
"to take away": (a) to keep; 
to save ; rhi-abe na hi me [ " \] 
keep this pen-knife for me! 
irh-ixo hi [,J'\] I have saved 
money (v. rhie [J] gb-axua 
[.']); (*) t0 take out; igba r-o*5- 
owe, dorhi-ere hi me [,'\J ' \] 
"a thorn is in my foot, come 
(and) take it out for me!" (fua 
[J], though possible, need not 
be used, as its idea of " throwing 
away" is understood in the 
sentence) . rhie [ J ] lele f < ' ] ' ' to 
take (and) follow": (a) to take 
something together with some- 
thing else; orhi-emiowo lel- 
ema re [..'*•/.'] "he took meat 
(' along') with fufu (and) ate 
(it) " ; {b) to rub something along 
a surface; orhi-oda lel-£e [ * ^] 
he is painting along it (viz. the 
surface of a wall, etc.). rhie 
[J] te te [J] to (take and) hide; 
orhi-en-ebe le re [./'*./] "he 

took the book (and) hid (it)", 
rhie [J] ma [J] to show some- 
thing to somebody; to prove; 
ona rhie ma-y-ut-ooi oe 

i..JJJ.r\\ this shows that 
you are not my son (as a re- 
proach when the son has be- 
haved badly, or been dis- 
obedient to his father) ; orhie ma 
(5e exoe da n-ogu w se [ ''J, V] 
"he proved to me his bad 
character that is with him" (the 
ma is half-long), rhie [J] na 
[ ' ] to give somebody something ; 
rhi-eb-sre ne give him 

his book! (but v. ya ['] na ['] 
"to give as a present"), rhie 
W] n> [J] (a) to (take and) 
hang up; orhi-erhu ru£ ro y- 
egbaha [ , , \J / . J ' ' he took your 
hat (and) hung it on the door 
beam"; (b) to perch (of birds); 
ahiaoE rhie ro y-owa n&['\J ' ] 
a bird perched on this house 
(not rhi-ero [./]!). rhie [J] ve 
[J~\ to (take and) hold; mi£ 
rhie oe ue [_*] hold it for me ! 
orhi-ukpo (3e o-oxia [./../] he 
held a cloth when going, rhie 
[J] uo w obo [./] to take some- 
body or something with oneself 
(on a journey) ; orhi-oti w of£ fo w 
obo o-ori-ehe [..'•*■ *] he 
took his " brother "' with him 
when he went travelling, rhie 
[J] y-oto [\] to put some- 
thing back: to leave when 
told to do so (but v. se i ['] 
tae [J] y-oto [\] which means 
"to leave behind"); weri-egbe 
[...'] may be added in front of 
y-oto in order to stress the idea 
of the object being returned; 
orhi-en-ukpo (weri-egbe [ ']) 
y-oto [..V.] he left the cioth 
(when told to put it back). 




Combinations with nouns: rhi- 
egbe [,/] to become free from 
being a servant (not from 
slavery) ; a young man working 
with a senior "brother", i.e. 
relation, can leave his service 
only when his "brother" lets 
him go, not of his own free 
will; the trans, verb is rhua [/] 
which is also used in reference 
to the emada [..J at the 8guae 
[ ]) ; uyurhi-egbe ns o-oguooadia 
t a ["..'.'....] have you already 
become free from service ? rhi- 
egbe [./] s-oto (se i [']) ['.] to 
obey; to submit; to admit some- 
body's superiority (Akugbe) ; 
A. prefers: rhi-egbe [..'] ri-oto 
(re 2 [']) [ ".]; orhi-egbe ri-oto 
ne [.*'•••."%] he obeyed him 
(possibly rhi-egbe [/*]). rhi- 
obo [. /] y-ebe [/] "to put hand 
to a paper": to sign (A. Biogr.). 
rhi-oha [ ' ] to marry (a woman) ; 
orhi-oha ' n-ods [,,'.~\.] he was 
married yesterday. 

rhierhie [/] (i) to taste well; "to 
be sweet"; but not "sweet" in 
the strict sense of the word; 
ema rhigrhig gbe [../'] fufu 
tastes very well. (2) to be 
pleasant to look at or see ; iku na 
rhierhie gbe [J..''] this dance 
is very pleasant ; irof ioi na rhi* 
erhie gbe [..J..''] this funeral 
is very "grand"; v. miemis [. ]. 

rhigoo [•'] tall and lean, of a man ; 
used with the verb ye [']; v. 
rhiamarhiama [•••*]. 

rhuji ["] all the time; max-ore 

rhiifi [,/."] " we are ( nave 
been) waiting for him all the 
time" (may be followed by ke 
naousi *ade [/*•.,/] "from aU 
the time to come ' ' : since all the 
while); cf. rhirhi ["]. 

rhio [ ' ] (1) when used by itself : to 
start early. (2) with another 
verb : to be early in doing some- 
thing; orhio kpao w ugbe hia 
[ ' ' ' • ] he always leaves early ; 
orhio xia [/•] he went early, 
rhio ['] re ["] to wake up, lit. 
''to be early in coming", is 
especially important; orhio re 
[ ' • ] he is awake, 
rhioo [*] very cold; e.g. of rain- 
water; a higher degree than 
xwerhee [..]; ofu re rhioo [.'*•] 
it is very cold; v. risriE [. .]. 
rhirhi [ " ] an auxiliary verb in- 
dicating: (1) that the action 
expressed by the main verb is 
continuous, or, at least, fairly 
extended (when used in the pf . : 
"for some time"); orhirhiru w £e 
[ •••%] he is doing it all the 
time; or (2) expressing the 
idea translated by "whoever", 
"whatever", etc.; n-orhirhiyaxi 
[ ] " whoever he may be": 
anyone ; cf. rhiif 1 [ " ] . 
rhixa [/] to become solid, of mud 

in house-building, 
rho 1 [J] to praise somebody for 
some achievement; y£rho (3e 
["^] don't praise me! 
rho 2 [J] in rho [J] da [/] (Oba 
[••]) to insult the Oba (by a 
mistake in etiquette, or by 
irreverence) ; gua gua n-uy£ rho 
[J J'XJ.'] "know how to talk 
lest you make a mistake in 
rhooiE [/] to insult; to abuse; cf. 

the preceding (?). 

rho 1 [J] to rain; ams rho [../] 
it is raining. 

rho 2 [J] (1) to pick up small 
things from the ground; irho-re 
si koko [ J' ,,"] I picked it up 
(and) gathered (it) together, e.g. 


scattered palm nuts when the 
bunch has been cut off; rho w eo- 
izobo [ . . * \ . ] to gather ^the 
things necessary for izobo [.%.], 
(2) to sort out; same as hano 

rhu 1 [ ] to light a lamp, also 
rh-ukpa ["]; cf. urhukpa [ J. 

rhu 2 ['] (1) to cover; not with a 
lid, v. gue [J], but e.g. by 
putting some big object over a 
small one. (2) to be leafy, of 
yam (the poles and yam ropes 
are covered by the leaves) . (3) 
to be blind, in rhu^aro ["J; 
cf. arhuaro [ t "\J. (4) to blind 
somebody (not only " to dazzle", 
v. gb-ebibi ['J J, but in the full 
sense of the word); (5) in rhu 
['] gba [*] ma ['] to come 
closely together. 

rhua [*] (1) to wear; to put on; 
to dress; irh-ukpo [/J (a) I have 
put clothes on; I have dressed; 
(b) I wear a cloth, clothes; 
orhua-c-ukpo [/-J he is wear- 
ing his (i.e. somebody else's) 
cloth (es) ; (orh-ukpa-te [ . V . ] he 
wears his own dress).' (2) to 
dress somebody; orhua-(-ukp5 
[."".] he dressed him (with 
nasalised f); cf. rhua [J], 

rhua [/] (1) to peel off (skin of 
snakes, or of human beings after 
some kinds of illness; or the 
bark of certain trees, v. ugbogbo 
[V]); egbe o£ rhuafe [ V ] 
"my body peeled". (2) "to be 
clothed ", of an omada [..J; the 
emada used to go naked during 
the term of their service so that 
" to be clothed" is an equivalent 
to "to terminate one's time of 
service with the Oba". (3) to 
clothe, i.e. to terminate the term 
of service of an omada; also 


rhua [J] u-oguo(3adia ['..J "to 
free (somebody) from servant- 
hood". (4) in rhua w egbe [ *] 
to be on one's guard, v. rhi- 
e gbe [./]; cf. rhua [ ]. 

rhus 1 [J] to circumcize (males 
and females) ; cf. arhus [ ] . 

rhus 2 [J] to set a trap (the trap 
is bent when it is set; the verb 
is used with all names of traps, 
except oyoro [_] (verb: fi [']); 
irhusjfi [../] I am setting a 

rhue 3 [J] to congeal (of oil); 
v. ki [/]. 

rh-uk [ / ] to run ; orh-ute [ * • ] he 
ran; v. 1e [>], t-uk mu [/'] "to 
start running". 

rhurhE [/] to pour; rhurhs [ '] 
kua ['] to pour out; orhurh- 
ofigb5 kua [,yj] he poured 
palm-oil out. ofo rhurhs ku-ooE 
[.".""•] lit . " perspiration is pour- 
ing on me": I am streaming 
with perspiration. 

rhurhurhu [•/] staggering; tumb- 
ling against things ; ru rhurhu J 
rhu ['•/] to move in the way 
described above; v. snyas [ ]. 

rhuouda [./] (1) a verb indicating 
that the action of the main 
verb is done because of some- 
thing (followed by a pronoun) ; 
orhuCuda-re yagb-ouoxa-fg 
l.'.J.\.J.] "on account of it 
he beat his wife"; orhuCuda-re 
tota L.../V] "he is sitting 
down because of it". (2) also 
used with the meaning "in 
spite of"; irhumida-re ru w £e 
L'.J.' "%] I did it in spite of him. 
(3) the conjunction "because"; 
ogi-owa-re hia, rhuuuda-y-ora- 

k P ao [..V.V.V] he burnt all 
his houses, because he was going 
to leave (done by the Sobo 


people) from i*e ['.]). 

(4) because of (noun or pre- 
position?); iyayo rhut3ud-ose oe 

[.'*..'.'] 1 sha11 S° because of 
my friend ; rhuuud-oni and 
rhuoud-ofi [,'J] "because of 
that ' ' : therefore ; rhuoud-oni 
imayinagwi gbe [ . . V ' ] " 
is on) account of that (that) 
I never quarrel any more " ; rhu~ 
mid-oni oyaze-y-iyo [..V. 'A] 
lit. (it is) account of that (which) 
will cause me to go (-y- from 
iye ['.]). 

ra [ ' ] an auxiliary verb denoting 
imminence of the action ex- 
pressed by the main verb; 
"going to", "about to"; ora^ 
su^se [."'%] he is going to ac- 
company him ; oterasu w £e [/""%] 
he was going to accompany him 
(but it did not happen) . 

ta [.] (1) or; ms t&JiH-Way 
[ ' •♦.] "I or he (it is who) 
must go". (2) particle indicating 
a question: t-uxia ta [*\.] are 
you going? 

tae [J] to go; iyirae [J'\] I am 
not going again; otae [J] he is 
gone (same as orie [ t J])', of. ta 


taxorayo [••••] light (of the sky) ; 
blue ; oye rayorayo [.*•"•] it is 

re 1 ['] (1) to eat ; in front of vow- 
els, re becomes ri-. This occurs 
in the following combinations: 
ri^abe [. .*] to be, become guilty 
(in a lawsuit); ori w abe [."'] he 
is guilty (he has lost the law- 
suit), ri^ara [./] to be bitter, 
ri-arha [.'.] to be accepted in 
egioi [°X of a dead man. 
ri^ase ["/] to be, become in- 
nocent (especially in court); 


n-ori w ase ['*'*] innocent, ri^egie 
[*'] W to obtain a title. ri w ere 
[' ' ] to make a profit. ri w eo-ate 

[../] " to eat food "> t0 eat 
something. ri w sbo [ " ' ] " to eat 

juju" ; to swear a false oath; to 
violate a promise given on oath 
(e.g. of a woman who has com- 
mitted adultery; women must 
swear that they will be faithful 
to their husbands ; if they break 
the oath, the jujus and ancestral 
spirits by which the oath was 
sworn must be pacified {v. 
zo 2 [/]). rLok-ods [./•] "to 
eat the parcel of the way": to 
embezzle ; Ozo ri w ok-ode [.""•.] 
Ojo has embezzled (sc. money), 
ri ['] osa [/] to owe a debt; 
v. 6£ [J], tu [']. ri w ova [./] 
to take, have a nickname or 
praise-name. ri w oya [".] to 
suffer misfortune or disgrace. 
ri w oba [ * ' * ] to be Oba ; to reign as 
Dba; ori w oba n-skp-ugie [.*'.*'•] 
he reigned (as Oba) for twenty 
years. ri w uxu [".] to inherit 
something. (2) to wear out 
through long use, e.g. knife, axe, 
shoes; but v. also nwie [y]. 
(3) to cheat, in idiom, ori^ot-obo 
ri w ot-ow£ kperskpste [.' V. . . ] 
lit. ' ' he ate his hand ate his leg 
entirely": he cheated him pro- 
perly (the usual term is mu 

□ pi [']); t'. do3 [']• 
re 2 ["] to be, with a noun pre- 
dicate; Ozot-akowe [.*"./] Ojo 
is a clerk; sre 

neither — nor; cf. ore i t.'], (ete, 

re [)'] (1) to hide (something); 
t-egbe [/] na ['] to hide oneself 
from something or somebody. 
(2) to bury; oyat-ofim o-is-eoa 
[ • •* ^] "he was burying a 

dead man when I arrived (se 
[•]) there"; cf. u t eCs [.%.], 

• m. • *l 1 r "I 

irorim [...J. 

teyeteye [••••] (or reyee [••]) loud 
(of shouting) ; oda tu teyee [.'*••] 
he shouted aloud; v. rharhaa- 
rha [••*]. 

tece ['*] (tere o ['*•]) welcome; 
v. ob-oxia ["']. 

teysfeye [....] P ink ; used with the 
verb ba i [J], 

rets [/] to deceive; cf. eters [,"\J. 

to [ " ] (i) to overflow ; to inundate ; 
sze na ro this river has 

overflowed; ski to [..^\] the 
market is full (all the traders 
have come). (2) to be cheap; 
oto [.W it is cheap; o t o [/] it 
is (always) cheap. (3) to dis- 
charge pus, matter (of a boil). 

to [J] to think; iro o-erio [ m ^J] 
I think so ; t° Jyo [ / ' ] to add 
up (e.g. prices of goods bought 
or sold); cf Yor. ro [J; cf 
toto [.*], ko [..]; v. mu ['] 

toyo [. ] to be watery, soft, e.g. 

of fufu, gari; cf. otoyo [ ]. 
toro [.*] (1) to think; oj^Jmo 

['.'..'] is of m Y own (e.g. 
money) that I am thinking". 
(2) to calculate; ryo n-atoro 
[*...'] money calculation. (3) to 
add, in roro [/] ku ['] gbe [']; 
eoi n-atoto ku gbe [.../"] 
"things that are added ' to- 
gether": addition; cf. to [J], 
tDXD [/] (1) to be ripe (and soft; 
highest stage of maturity; for 
ripe fruits that are still hard 
v. 00 2 [J])' t uhoro na rpxoe 

[' V..~\] tnis pawpaw is ripe. 
(2) to be cheap (v. to [*]) ; eui n- 

ids-t)-8ki-t£ P x ^e [..*'. y "\] 
the things I bought in the 
market to-day are cheap. (3) to 


be easy, in: oroxo o-egbe [..'.'] 
I have an easy life, i.e. I have 
all I want ; cf. egbetoxooe [ . . ] ; 
v. fu [*] egbe [/]. 
tu [*] (1) to do; oru w £e fo [/ -J] 
he finished doing it. ru ['] 
doyoro [ . . . ] to let the lip hang 
down, m ["] xo [J] to ill-treat. 
Combinations with nouns: ru w 
egbe [..'] {a) to drag one 
another; (b) to kick, tu eks 
["J to collect and mix mud 
for house building (v. ho [J]). 
Idiom. : tu eoi n-egb-ere [ . . . V .] 
"to do the things of his body" : 
to bury him (Dxw. song 7). 
ru^Ese [..%] to be kind (in the 
meaning: "to bestow favours", 
i.e. to give "dashes"); oru^Ese 

me [ /*] ne always favours 

me (viz. with presents). ru w iko 
[ ' ] to hold a meeting. ru w ohu£ 
[ ' ] to hunt, tu ['] osa [/] 
to owe a debt {v. te 1 ['], (5s [J]) ; 
n-aru w st-°sa ['*'/] "to whom 
people owe a debt": creditor. 
tu w obarl [...'] to hunt (also 
ri-Dbafl [../], v. rie [J]), tu 
['] uhe [/] to cohabit with 
(direct object) (indecent, worse 
than ho [/]; for decent ex- 
pressions v. (gu ['] "with") ku 

[/])• ( 2 ) *° °ff er a sacrifice (to 
ancestors, the guardian spirit, 

and deities) . ru w eho [ . . " ] to make 

the annual ancestral festival 

(including the sacrifice) ; also 

ri w eho [..'] (te 1 [']). ru w erha 

[ " ' ] to sacrifice to one's father. 

tu^Ebo [".] to offer a sacrifice 

to a deity, tu £hi [**J to 

sacrifice to one's guardian spirit. 

tu w £tit5i [..*.] to sacrifice to the 

dead people (used of sacrifices 

to the deities as well) . ru_uhuou 

[ ' ] to make a sacrifice to 

one's head, when advised to do 
so by the oracle (ogwega [."% .]); 
(gws [J] means: to sacrifice to 
one's head at the igwe [, J day), 
ru can further be used with the 
name of the particular deity to 
whom one offers the sacrifice, 
e.g. ru oxwahs [..,/.] to offer a 
sacrifice to Dxwahs [./.]; v. 
rhi-eyo [/.] and mi-eyo [/.], 
y-eoi [."%] na ['], ze ['] na ["], 
wa [J] na ['], mu ['] ze [*] na 
VI gw£ [J], tho Ul (3) to be- 
come, be, of a certain quality 
which is indicated by a re- 
duplicated collective noun ; cor- 
responds to English construc- 
tions like " to be sandy, watery ", 
etc.; oru w exexae (exae ['.]) 
[ J it is becoming sandy (e.g. 
a path that is frequently used), 
oru amaame (ams [ . J) [..."%'] 
is becoming watery (of soup); 
oru_amaams [."'♦] it is watery, 
rua [*] second part of verbal 
combinations which seems to 
intensify the meaning of the 
first part in some way, or, to 
indicate that the action implied 
by the first part is carried out 
to its utmost limit, e.g. gbe [*] 
-to hit", gbe [•] rua [*] "to 
kill", z-itfo ["] and z-iyo [**] 
rua ['] "to squander money", 
rhi-a ['J] "to be spoilt (en- 
tirely) ". After nasalised vowels 
the word occurs in a nasalised 
form: fiia ['], and shortened 
forms are frequent: -ua, -a [*] 
(-ua, -a). 

ruburubu [ — ] entirely round 
(like a ball; used with the verb 

ye [*]). 

rue [J] to be jealous (of women), 
rueye [/] to shake; oruey-erha ni 
[,. 'J] ne shook that tree; v. 

xue [J] (to move, or shake, 

rueruerue [•••] very small; of 
things only ; used with the verb 
ye [*]; v. fueifusifuEi [•••]. 

ruE i [)} possessive pronoun of 
the 2nd pers. sgl. "your": ebe 

t ue {..J'] y° ur book. After 
nasalised vowels, fus: agbo {us 

[..J] y° ur life '* snor t forms are 
-us, ue [J], -a [J]. 
rus 2 [J] (i) to learn; also 
rue w ebe [ /] lit. "to learn 
book"; oru-ore ] he is 
learning it. (2) to teach; also: 
tue [J] ebe [/] "to teach 
book"; orue t5-ebe he is 

teaching me; oru-ore he 
is teaching him (implying "it" 
as well); c/. iru£t5i [..J, uruEj 

iaz 3 [J] to have a good effect ; of 
a sacrifice; (only used of ese 
[ ]); to be accepted, rue [J] 
na ['] to have a good effect in 
somebody's favour, e.g. ese n- 
izore ru£ ms [.'J J'] the 
sacrifice I performed had an 
effect that was favourable for 

ru£rueru£ [ J faintly burning, 
used with the verb ba [J]; v. 
ri£ri£ri£ [...]. 

rururu [ #< J describes a pregnant 
woman; also used to describe 
swellings caused by elephanti- 
asis (eve [_]), and pregnancy 
in cows or pigs; used with the 
verb ye [']. 

faCE [/] to fry (with oil or lard); 
oko, dofau-oxoxo na n-ima re 

"friend, come 
and fry this fowl for us to 
eat!"; emiowo n-afao-ona xi ra 

[,7."W] ^ tri ^ s fri e ^ meat? 


It [J] to know; n-ofe-Ci ['%] or 
oi3-ife\3i [ ' J an intelligent man. 
ai U g L/A] lit. "one does not 
know " : perhaps, in case . . . ; 
itama bua, aife o-u-aru ee 
t.V.V.J'M"! have told you 
all the time (scil. all about the 
consequences), in case you do 
it" (lit. something like: "one 
does not know whether you will 
do it"); c/.ifHi [,..]. 

fehufehu [ ] (i) a specific 

adverb describing sawdust, or 
worm-dust ; (2) feeble, defeated. 

fefe [ '] to tickle; v. so 1 ['] 
iguggui [ '/J]. 

fi [J] a variant of ni [/]. 

fiv3ia [/] to supplicate; ofioia (3e 
n-ryeyigb-ee [..'••• . \) he begged 
me not to flog him again, 
fioia ['] na ['] to plead for 
somebody; ofima ns [.."%] he is 
pleading for him. 

fofce [/] to marry (used of both 
sexes) ; iri-od-ox-erha vz n-iyaf o\5- 
3do [...' I am going 
(way of my father's) to my 
father's place in order to (go 
and) marry a husband, foo- 
oxuo [/J to marry a woman; 
ofou-os [,.\/] (#) she married 
him; (b) he married her; cf 

' Of DOS [/.]. 

fua L/] ' (1) to affect; to befall 
(esp. trouble) . (2) to poison ; cf 
efua [/]. 

I usyf usy f uey [ * • * ] or fwsy [ * ] very 
small indeed; more so than the 
degree indicated by tine [ • * ] ; of 
infants, or of things ; used with 
the verb ye [']; v. rueruerue 

fufa [ . ] to start, be startled; once, 
suddenly, as result of a fright; 
(but v. gwD [*] "to tremble"); 

used with gip [ . J ; ma u-ore de 
ku w egbe u-ebiebi, okewafufa gifi 

[.'•-. ...'•.'•.'..] I and he dash- 
ed against each other in the dark, 
and he suddenly gave a start. 

sa 1 ['] (1) to scoop (water); 
os-ams u-uhae [//.] he drew 
water from the well (os-ams 
[/ ] he drew water; osa me 
[ . ' * ] he drew, viz. water, for me) . 

(2) in sa [ ' ] y-D to scoop into 
(part of a liquid); v. rhurhe [/] 
(to turn the container over so 
that all the water is poured out) ; 
tue 1 [J] (from vessels with a 
narrow neck, like calabashes). 

(3) to cast (in brass); osa^e 
y-efooo [.'*•..] or oy-efofo sa~e 
[."./.] he cast him in brass 
(no. 3 is put in here as the cast- 
ing in brass also necessitates 
pouring the brass into the 
moulds) . 

sa 2 ['] to shoot (with gun, bow, 
and cross-bow) ; oy-osisi s-uzo 
[ / " ' J he shot an antelope with 
a gun (gbe [*] is more used); 
osa (58 [/*] he hit me (same as 
ofi oe [ '•] which, however, 
applies to shooting with a gun 
only) . 

sa 1 [/] (1) to plait one's hair (of 
women); osa w et-6re [..V.] she 
has plaited her hair ; v. tue 2 [J]. 
(2) to start weaving or net- 
making (i.e. to weave, or make, 
the first stripes) ; osa w ido [ / ] he 
is weaving the first stripes; 
osa w ewa [...'] he is beginning a 
mat. Iterat. sab [/] in sal-eto 
[.."] to comb one's hair; rhi- 
oyiya gu t5e n-iya sal-eto 

[.'...' *...'] "give me a comb 
in order that I may take it to 
comb (my) hair ! " 


sa 2 [/] (i) to burst ; ibi-emoto na 
sare [y-JJA this tyre ("in- 
testines of motor-car") is burst; 
ofit3i na sa o-sko 
this corpse is burst at the 
abdomen (ve ['] also used). 
(2) to crack (of a falling tree); 
erha na sa, gi-ak [.'./. J.] 
this tree is cracking, let's run! 
Iterat. in salo [/] kua ["] to 
burst, of several tyres (kua is 
not used with sa) ; v. so [J] (of 
cloth) . 

sa 3 [/] to raise; os-ada lel-oh- 
oxwahe [./'..' J.] "he raises 
the ada sword follows the 
Oxwahe priest": he follows the 
Oxwahe priest with raised ada 
( — lel-oba [ "follows the 

sa 1 [J] to jump. 

sa 2 [J] occurs in sa w ibo [/J to 
guess the identity of something 
hidden, e.g. the contents of a 
closed box, as test for a new 
" doctor' ' or a man chosen by 
an ihe to be his priest; v. 
ha w ibo [/J, under ha 3 [/]. 

saba [ / ] to be able ; oyasaba ru w se 
[// *\] he will be able to do it; 
osaba £u w £e [."*•>] he knew how 
to do it; cf. Port, saber, Pidgin 
savvy, or se i ['](?); v. s-stl [/]. 

sahs [\] to faint; osahe [/J he 
fainted, or, has fainted. 

s-ako ['J; c/. se 2 [']. 

sakpafeyodi ["/..] the fifth 
generation of children; cf. eyodi 
[',.](?); w. iwu 2 [..]. 

s-ams ['J; cf. sa 1 [']. 

se ['] (1) to nail; y-ise s-se [/\] 
"take a nail and nail it". (2) 
to sew (cloth and leather); 
DS-ukpo [/J he sews cloth; 
os-ohia [ mm ' ] he is sewing leather ; 
cf. ise [/]. 

s-ebs [/]; cf. se 1 [*}. 

se i ['] (1) to reach; os-oe [' J] 

» — •* 

he reached it. se [ ' ] o-erio [ ' / ] 
"reach thus": so far; or con- 
jugated: ose o-erio n£ n-uyu- 
yava w ei3a [ / * J m " ' t f\] lit. " has 
it reached so far already that 
you are not going to branch off 
here?": something like: "are 
you so angry that you do not 
want to call on us any longer? " 
(said e.g. to a disappointed lover 
by relations of the girl). (The 
high tone of -ya- indicates the 
negation.) (s-£rio ['J] is also 
used). (2) to come true, v. 
s-unu [/]; eo£ vz see [,.'\] my 
word has come true. (3) to be 
enough; os£e [ # \] it is enough; 
omahesE [""\] it is not yet 
enough; ose oe [/•] it is enough 
for me (but: dse m£ [/•] it is 
effective for me, viz. a charm or 
medicine); ose u-erio [*' J] that 
is enough (e.g. when pouring 
out medicine). (4) to visit; 
us-eke n-iye [."..*] "have you 
reached the place where I am ? " : 
have you ever ct>me to see 
me? (5) Idiom.: os-umes [/•] 
"what a nuisance"; an expres- 
sion of regret or annoyance at 
some mistake (also ose oe 
s-egbee [.'".']) one has made 
oneself ; os-uee [ / • ] " oh, you 
are a trickster" (to somebody 
who e.g. has broken a pot, 
and put the pieces together so 
that it looks undamaged) (also 
os-u£s-egbee[ / *.']); os-o£ee[ ' •] 
"I'm sorry for him" (when 
learning of something bad that 
has happened to a man known 
to the speaker) (also os-o^e 
s-egbee [/*.']), v. se ["] egbe 
[/]. The lit. meanings are 

possibly something like "it has 
reached me, you, him", but 
urns is a very strange form. The 
last vowel is lengthened in these 
exclamations, s-ebs [ / ] to make 
a boundary between two (or 
more) farms; gi-ay-oka s-ebs 
y-ugbo na [./'.,'",] let's take 
corn to make a boundary on this 
farm! ss ['] egbe [/] "to reach 
body": (a) to befall; to affect (of 
curses, not diseases); (b) to be 
one's turn ; os-oj;-egbe [ / '] (a) it 
befell him; {b) it is his turn; 
hence: n-os-ot-egbe [" *] the 
next one; n-oyis-D^-egb-ona xi 

["..%."] tne next one is this, 
cf. osegbe [...], v. zz [ * ] lele [ / ]. 

s-sti [.'] to give evidence (same 
as s-osse [*.]); os-££i me [.**•] he 
gave evidence for me ; os-E^i gbe 
Os [."*."] he gave evidence 
against me. s-Eti [ '] to be able 
(v. m-Eti [/]). s-obo [/] y-o p\] 
(a) to begin; (b) to catch (also: 
to find out somebody's guilt by 
oracle); is-obo mu w e (or, y-o) 
[. '*>] I have caught him, or 
found him out. Must not be 
mistaken for s-obo [/] "to clap 
hands", v. so i [']. s-osee [' ] to 
give evidence; os-osse gb-ee 
[. ."%] he bore evidence against 
him. s-ota [*J "reaching 
ground": down; d-igue s-oto 
[ ' ] kneel down! tota(a) s-oto 
[V.] sit down! se ["] ok§ [/] 
to satisfy ; not of food ; os-ou-oke 

[.73 "ft nas sat ish e( i me": I 
am content; Ds-of-oks [ * '] "it 

has satisfied him": he is con- 
tent, cf. isoks [..J, v. £ko [/\]; 
s-ukps [/] (ukpe [/] "beak") 
"to poke one's nose into some- 
thing": to interrupt (a talk); 
to be "pompo" (too forward); 

idiom. : os-ukpe o-owewe [ J t ] 

he is interrupting in the course 
of the sentence ; oooxa na s-ukps 

gbe o-ota [../;•..'] this boy 
meddled much in the talk, s-uma 
[ * ] to hold a council ; cf. isuma 
[...]. s-unu [.*] (a) to happen; 
(b) to come true. 

ss 2 ['] to break; to split; se ['] 
fua ["] to split off, e.g. a corner 
of a pot ; uwawa na s£ fua o-eho 
[../.'..] this soup-pot has split 
off at the edge, s-ivi ['J (a) to 
husk palm kernels; mu w egbe 
n-ugi-aya s-ivi [.,'', J J\] "get 
ready that you let go (that we 
may) and husk kernels!" (b) to 
bear twins; cf. ivi [\]. s-ak5 
[' ] to file teeth. This is done 
by Yoruba people mostly, but 
also by the Binis of Akur£ and 
the people of Use ["]. With Bini 
people it is said to be a modern 
copying only. The two middle 
upper incisors are filed mostly 
and by means of a knife or file ; 
os-ako [ .'.] he has his teeth filed ; 
dse t5-ako [/* J he filed my teeth ; 
n-akpa s-ot-ako [ t " ' J lit . " whom 
a foetus has filed the teeth": a 
man with a natural tooth-gap. 
s-iwu ['J to make the tribal 
body-marks (iwu [..]). Whether 
s-iwu belongs to this verb, does 
not seem to be quite certain. 

se 3 ['] in s£ ['] rae [J] to leave; 
os-oe rae he left him. 

ss [/] to surpass (means to ex- 
press the comparative idea); 
okpolo see Oe [.//] he is bigger 
than I ("pass me"); of£ s££ ve 
[ J '] he is becoming cleverer 
than I (the s££ is spoken on a 
low falling tone); cf. se i [']. 

s£rhi£ [/] to revoke a curse; this 
is. in the case of a simple curse, 

i8 5 

done by saying: iserhi-5 [,\J] 
I take the curse from you (re- 
duplicated: issrhierhi-5 [,\J], 
shortened into is£Erhi-5 [."%".!/])• 
If it is, however, a curse sworn 
at an ihe-shrine, a sacrifice must 
be made to the ins, whereupon 
water from a cup is spat on the 
man on whom the curse lies, or 
into the air if he is absent, and 
the above mentioned formula 
is said. If the cursed man is 
absent, the formula is iserhig- 
rhig [.*.'], or isErhigrhi-oe 
"I take the curse from him' 3 . 

s-eri [.']; cf. se i ["]. 

s-£ti [/]; cf S£ i ["]. 

si i ['] (i) to draw; to pull; os-ika 
u-uw-oha [.","•] "he is drawing 
ika in the bush " (ika is a creeper ; 
when it is wanted, it is cut and 
pulled down) . si ['] maama [/] 
to be pressed together; if a si 
maam-egbe [*.'..] they are 
pressed together (of a crowd), 
si ['] xua [J] to equip oneself; 
to get, be, ready (lit. " to pull and 
turn one's clothes up ") . si ams 
[ .] ( a ) "to draw rain": to 
make rain, by charm ; (b) to be 
lean. si w egbe koko [..'."] to 
gather, intrans., egbe may be 
omitted; wa hia si egbe koko 
y-eoa (o-)itere [.'./. ..Y.'] you 
all gather together here until I 
come! s-irhurhu ['/] to be- 
come (be) mouldy; os-irhurhu 
[//] it is mouldy, v. mu i [']. 
si osa [ /] to reclaim a debt; 
"to draw debt"; osi osa gbe 
[."*•] he is too harsh in re- 
claiming debts, si ukoko [ * \ J 
to smoke a pipe; osi ukoko gbe 
[.".J'] he smokes too much. 
(2) to crawl (of a baby) ; oo-us 
na si ne [,//*] this your child 

is crawling already. (3) to cause, 
esp. si w szo [**'] to cause a 
"palaver"; iy-osi szo [ ] it 
is money that has caused the 
palaver; oxuo osi ezo [../"] it 
is woman that (always) causes 
palavers; v. ya 1 ['], zs 1 [']. 

si 2 ['] in si ['] ks [J] {a) to be 
near ; owa-re sik-oy-uosf J t 'J / ] 
his house is near to mine, v. 
dia [']; (b) to go near; to go 
towards a certain direction; si 
k£ w iyeke [.."..] go further back ! 
si k-odo [_\] (odo) "go further 
there" : go further in that direc- 
tion ! (c) to place near, as in si 
[ ' ] k-oto [ J m ] (oto) to turn down 
(the wick of a lamp, but without 
turning the lamp out) ; si ukpa 
na k-oto ["'./] turn the lamp 
down! cf. si 1 □(?). 

si 3 ['] in si ['] kpao ['] to remove 
from; to leave a certain place; 
c/.sii ['](?). 

si 1 [*] (1) to give thread (of 
loom). (2) to spin; isi oruru 
[..."] I am spinning cotton 
(but do ['] "to weave" is used 
of the spider). 

si 2 ['] in si w aro [* \] to "give the 
glad eye" (same as si 1?); 
osi^ato dooo [."..] she is flirting. 

si ['] e U<> ['.] to watch; to 

observe; cf. yi 3 ['] sro [" J. 
sie 1 [J] to be black; osiere 

duduudu [./.*"] it is quite 

black ; cf. usie [ / ] . 
sie 2 [J] to take a pot from the 

fire; osi-sre [/'•] he took it 


sis [ * ] to deny ; osis o-inof £ L\\] 
he denied (it) when I asked him. 

si£ [J] to break down (collapse, 
fall in, owing to subsidence) 
(same as suo [J]); uye na sigfg 
[J. J.] this hole has collapsed. 


osisf e [ m J t ] may also be used in 
the following case : when cassava 
has been ground it is put on a 
bag to dry, and a heavy weight 
is put on top. If this weight 
gradually drops off, the cassava 
is dry, and can be used. In this 
case, osuoro [,y A .] would not be 

si§(f£) i [.J describes bright 
moonlight, used with the verb 
ba U\ 

sie(fs) 2 [_] describes the drop- 
ping of water; ola kua sisfe 
[."..] it is dropping (" passing") 
out gradually; cf. sie [J], 

siesissie [ mm J a word used in the 
introductory formula of stories; 
cf. si i [']; v. um-afaoE [.*'.]. 

sigEsige [ — ] very lean; oye 
sigEsigE [/ — ] he is very lean; 
v. kagukagu [ — ]. 

sigosigo [ — ] tall and lean, of 
human beings only; used with 
the verb ye [ ' ] . 

s iy e ~ [. ] auxiliary expressing a 
doubtful question (same as kwe 
[']):" really "); osiyenwina [..'/] 
is he really working? osiyere 
[ . . "V ] has he really come ? (-re 
is actually spoken with a rise 
from mid to high). 

s-ihua [/]; cf. so 3 [']. 

sika [/] to shake each other, 
holding one another at the 
upper arms; first phase in 
wrestling; after that, the part- 
ners let go of each other, and 
the real match starts; perhaps 
the original meaning is ''to 
stick to each other", "to clasp 
each other", sika [/] mu ['] 
to stick, gum to something; 
ibob-otis sika mu w ££-ukp5 

[.'....] an otig [* ] ( a f rmt ) 
skin lias stuck to his cloth (mu 

is low here, not a low-fall) ; cf. 

sikasika [ ]. 

sikasika [... J tough, of meat, or 
wood which does not split 

easily; oye sikasika [ ] *t 1S 

tough; cf. sika [/]. 

simosimo [•••*] very lean; very 
thin, of plantains ; oye simosimo 
[/••••] it is very lean; v. kagiT 


sioi [ • ] a specific adverb describ- 
ing an erect way of sitting ; v. 
guka [J; otota sioi [ m 'J'] be 

sits erect, 
sira- [J] in the presence of ; sira-re 

t;-okpia na narha [ m J . JJ~\J] 

"in his presence it was (that) 

this man stole". 

s-ivi [■ ]; cf. ss 2 [']. 

sioi 1 [ / ] to claim something by 
force' or tricks; "from some- 
body" is expressed by gu [ ] ; 

gu w Ee SlUl w £ [■^.'.] claim it 
from him ! 
sit5i 2 [/] to be next of kin to 
somebody; m-o (or me-z-o [. ]) 
sii3i w ozo [J '*'] Ojo is next of 
kuTto me, i.e. brother of the 
same father and mother ; in this 
case I am the senior; perhaps 
it really means "it is I who 
claims Ojo viz. as his brother", 
v. swi 1; 0d£ er^siui Osagie 

[;;;VM Osagie i s next of kin 
to *6d£ (Od£ being senior) . 

sioi 3 [ *] (1) to cure; gu oe sioi 
ooa na [,\,J ] help me to cure 
this mari.' '(2) to protect, e.g. in 

s-iwu ['J; cf. se 2 [']. 

so 1 [*] 'to stab, knock, push, with 
something pointed: su w oe [ 
knock it (with a pointed instru- 
ment); espec. to butt (of rams, 
goats, cows). su w anyo [ .] to 
tap rubber; so can mean "to 


tap juice" from any tree, by 
means of a curved tapping 
instrument or knife; v. bs [J], 
so ['] asefs [\J (su w asefe 
["..]) to tickle under the ribs 
with one finger; oso o-asefs 
[/*..] he tickled me under the 
ribs, so ['] igueguE ['J J] 
(same meaning as the preceding) ; 
oso u-igusgue [,'JJ] he is 
tickling me. This word is also 
used when speaking of some- 
body's intrigues or other (magi- 
cal) exertions to damage a man ; 

V. f£f£ [/]. so [*] obo [/] to 
shake one's hand; isu w £t-obo 
[/'/] I shook his hand, s-obo 
[/] to knock at the door, is- 
obo o-£xu w sre [/...".] I knocked 
at his door. 

so 2 [ ' ] to be dark ; only used with 
the subject ebiebi [/*] "dark- 
ness", and with ofuuu [\ J 
" avocado-pear" (in the imperf.) 
to denote its ripening; the state 
of being ripe is expressed by 
bin;*/. Yor. fun. 

so 3 [*] to make a noise; ame so 
[ /] the rain is pelting down; 
oso ti-£re [.*.'.] he is shouting to 
call him. s-ihua [/] to sing a 
song; os-ihua [/•] he sang a 

s-obo [.']; of. S£ I [*], SO I [*]. 

s-oyo [ '] to shake a vessel con- 
taining water in order to rinse 
it; v. kp-oyo [/] (to shake a 
pole, in order to pull it out of 
the ground) . 

sokpa [.'],['*] (i) to leave out; to 
exempt, mostly as a butt of 
one's boasting; uyarhuo gie n- 
iksre hia, sokpa oe J.'. .'] 
if you are boasting towards all 
the others, leave me out. (2) but. 
(3) unless. 

Sokpoba ['•*] name of a village: 
"Sakpoba"; its population con- 
sists of Jekri people only; cf. 
sokpa [/], Dba [**]. 

s °l° [. ] W to pick, of birds. 

(2) to bore a hole with a pointed 
instrument, v. ha [']; osol-se 

J] he bored (or, picked) it. 

(3) idiom, to come true, of a 
suspicion, e.g. em n-ed-o hskosolo 

[.:%.-//] ^he thing of the 
other day is gradually coming 
true" ; v. s-unu [/]. 

sologasologa [ ] describes 
walking with one sore foot, so 
that it makes no full footprint; 
oxia. sologasologa [ / ] he is 
walking with one sore foot. 

s-osee [*J; cf. ss 1 [']. 

s-oto [\]; cf ss 1 [']. 

so 1 ['] to grow, of grass and hair; 
v. ifui5u [...]. 

so 2 ['] to be hard; ss5-f-utut5E 
[/.."%.] ^ is not hard for him 
to do; cf eso [.J; v. loyo [/]. 

SD [J] ( I ) to s P^t (wood); oso 
erha [../] he is splitting wood. 
(2) to split (intrans.); erha. so 
[' J] the wood splits. (3) to 
tear (cloth); oso-o-ukpo [,J\] 
he tore my cloth. 

sogwogwo [,...] tender, of a child ; 

omo ne sogwosogwo [ / ] the 

tender child. 

sono [ / ] (1) to grieve, anger, annoy. 
(2) to disgust, be disgusting. 

sososo [ #> J describes something 
that foams; v. hu [']. 

sot£ [\] to rebel; osot£ [/J he 
rebelled; cf Yor. Jote [ # «], ote 
[ J, and Bini isots [...]. 

sss interjection used in calling 
dogs (same as gba [~\]). 

su 1 ["] (1) to be powdery, of 
ground or pounded foodstuffs 
like corn or soup herbs; osu 


[."%] it is (ground and) powdery. 
(2) to make powdery; oka n-ab 
su gbe ['..'"•] grinding corn 
makes (it) very fine, or powdery; 
v. b [*], duou [/]. 
su 2 [ ' ] (1) to be sticky (like gum) . 
(2) to be slow; usu gbe [/•] you 
are too slow ! 
sua [J] (1) to push, with hand; 
osua (5s y-iyeke [.AV..] he 
pushed me back. (2) to " push'' 
into dangerous actions, etc.; of 
harmful charms. 

su w anyo ["J; cf. so 1 [']. 

sue [J] to begin ; ooesue ne [ # J J ' ] 
he is beginning again. 

suey ['] describes the sound of 
some light object dropping into 
water (small stones, sticks, etc.), 
but also of some bather jumping 
straight into the water; osa fi 
sz£ susy [. .*. ] be jumped into 
the river plop! v. gbidii [_]. 

suku [/\] in ato-£ suku 

"your eyes look full of fear": 
you are shy. 

s-ukpe [ *]; cf. ss 1 [']. 

sulele [*'/] "on the shoulder", in 
omu-E sulele [.*'•.'] he carried 
him on his shoulder. 

s-uma [' J; cf. s£ 1 [*]. 

sunosunD [....] describes a lazy 
kind of walk, with a slack limp 
body, and, possibly, slightly 
moving arms; oxia sunosuno 

[/ ] he slouches. 

s-unu ["/]; cf. se 1 [']. 

suo [J] to collapse, of under- 
mined soil; same as si§ [J]. 

sususu ["'] dark blue, used with 
the verb bi 1 [ * ] ; same as dududu 


suii [ * ] describes a fixed look such 
as that of fortune-tellers, but 
also a foolish gape, v. ohua ['*], 

gboo [.]. 

(e)t- a particle found in front of 
the conjunctive and absolute 
pronouns, emphasizing the fol- 
lowing verb or imparting the 
idea of necessity; this kind of 
emphasis may also be expressed 
by tonal means only, e.g. ogb-os 
[*\] is equivalent to t-ogb-oe; 
t-uxia ra ['\J are you going? 
oyagb-os ra [ \ . ] will he write 
it? t-ogb-os ['\] he must write 
it, and also: he is writing it 
(with stress on the verb) . Instead 
of t-, rh- may be used before 
singular pronouns, or possibly 
only before the 2nd and 3rd 
pers. sgl. 

ta [*] (1) to speak; to say; to tell; 
ot-en-eue [ . . "\ ] he is telling the 
(already mentioned) story; ota 
u-erio [ / * J] he said so. ta [ ' ] ma 
[ J ] to tell somebody, t-ohoye 
[ A.] t° tell a lie ; to lie ; ot-ohoye 
[. '\.] ne ne( i> ohoy-ota [//] "it 
is a lie he is telling", t-ota [/] 
to tell something; ot-ota vs 
ma w f£ [. .V.] he talked to him 
of me. (2) to guess a riddle ; used 
without an object only, in the 
request: ta [*] guess! (with iro 
[\] "riddle", the verb mu [*] 
is used). The same meaning "to 
guess" is perhaps underlying 
the following two combinations 
verb + object: t-iss [' J to play 
the is£ ['J game, and t-ile ['.] to 
bet. Iterat.: tab [/] to talk 
much: to jabber (a more re- 
spectful term is gua [J]) ; tab 
does, however, also mean "to 
report", probably because this 
entails a somewhat lengthy talk, 
ta x ["] (1) to spread. (2) to hang, 
ta [*] yi [']: (a) to spread in. . ; 
t-ukpo y-ovs [\\] spread the 
cloth in the sun ! (6) to hang on . . ; 


tS w s y-egb-eke [\ ' J hang it on 
the wall! ata_e y-egb-eke [/ # /J 
it hangs on the wall, ta [ ' ] gu[ ' ] : 
t-ukp5 gu w eteburu ['...'. J spread 
the cloth on the table i ta ['] 
lele [/] would be used if a cloth 
were to be spread on several 
tables, t-iri [ '] to put up 
a rope (as a clothes line); 
ot-iri y-ovs [.'*•.] he fixed a 
clothes line in the sun. t-6ku 
[\] to measure by means of a 
line (mostly in timber work); 
t-6ku y-o [".%] measure it! (lit. 
' 'stretch a rope to it ! ") ; cf. ta 2 


ta 2 [ ] to be tall (of human 
beings); oua na tag this 
man is tall; cf. ta 1 ['] (?). 

ta [J] (1) to imitate; ystaa us 
[\"\] don't imitate me! (2) to 
compare ; y£ya w e taa oe [''..%] 
don't compare him with me ! 

tab- [J in idiom.: tab-st-sOe 
[/'J what is the matter? what 
is wrong? (lit. "or is it not the 
matter", viz. "is there anything 
the matter or is it not? ") ; w-or.- 
u w ee ta tab-s^-uwe L/'\./"] 
are you the one who did it, or 
was it not you ? cf. Yor. tabi [ t J] . 

tafia [ # "\] to interfere; to meddle 
in other people's affairs; utafia 

S be L..\] y° u interfere too 
much! cf. Engl, interfere; v. 

taitai [.J describes the smell of 
corpses and of dog-blood (the 1 
is not short here) ; cf. tataata 2 


tataata 1 [...] (to be stretched) 
straight and long ; used with the 
verb nie [J]; v. Texts: Uke 
keoe arhuato; cf. ta 1 [']. 

tataata 2 [... ] (1) salty; ofia ("it 
cuts ") tataata [.'...] it is salty. 

(2) sharp (of smells, e.g. of 
urine) ; cf. taitai [ # J. 
te [ ' ] an auxiliary verb indicating 
(1) that something was going on 
or was in a certain state in the 
past but implying that the end 
of the action was not attained, 
or that the state referred to is 
no longer existing; otema [; J] 
it was good (but it is no longer 
so) ; itewu [/'] I was dying, viz. 
o-uhuuu ni amu vs 
"(always) when that* illness 
attacked me". This leads to the 
meanings "nearly", e.g. in itewu 
[.'•] I nearly died, and "mis- 
takenly": utew-sr-eoa-nwa (re 
enwa [.%]) [/"^] -you 
were mistaken in saying: he is 
not there now". (2) that the 
action of the verb to which it 
is linked follows another action 
("before"); imi-og, (o-)otekpao 
[.*. I saw him before he 

had left; imi-5 w £d£gbegbe, (o-) 
oteyaxia [...;•;."] I see him 
every day before he leaves, 
te [J] to decorate; t-£fe [J m ] 
decorate it! ot(e) w owa he is 
decorating the house; ot-egbe 
[..'] he is decorating himself 
("the body"). 

t-egbe[/]mu[-];c/. t5 4 [']. 

teitei [ * * ] imitates the beating of 
pulses (generally with fear) ; in 
the case of the tortoise, leilei [ * * ] 
is used (in stories) (the i is 
long); v. afiama [.J. 

tete [/] to save, to be economical 
with something; tet-£e [,*\] save 
it ! Ozo, tet-inya n-ivio nw£ ni n- 
omi-ekenay-us£[ \ \ '] 

Ojo, be economical with the 
yams I brought you so that they 
will last ("get a chance to last") 
for five days ! 


te ['] to be contemptible; "to be 
useless"; ute ne o-en-uye na 

[. ... .] y ou are already "use- 
less" in (the state in) which 
you are now ! 
ts [/] to urge somebody on (to 
do something, by flattering 
him, or by acclamations); yets 

oe t u w £e [ . *\] d° n 't urge me 
on to do it ! (e.g. for I shall be 
overtired) . 

te [J] (i) to put in a file (or row?) ; 
te-bfeka na n-ifa ya y-uvi£-s£se 
[../Y-A V"] arrange these chil- 
dren so that they may be pro- 
perly in a single file! (e.g. may 
be said by a teacher). (2) to 
claim as one's relative (ot£ [/%]). 
(Perhaps this should be a separ- 
ate item). 

t-Ezo ["] mu [']; cf. to 4 [*]. 

ti 1 [ ' ] to be famous (but usually 
this is titi [/]). 

ti 2 ['] to be fat; ewe na feko ti 

[,\.J*] this & oa t * s (gradually) 
becoming fat. 
ti 3 [*] to boil; ame ti [ /] the 
water is beginning to boil; ams 
ti [ the water boils; cf. 

ti [J]. 

ti 1 ['] to fly; ahiauE ti [''."%] the 
bird flew. 

ti 2 ['] in t-ihi [ # ~\] to sneeze; 
ot-ihi [/\] he sneezed; v. zei [']. 

ti [J] (1) to warm up liquid food 
(soups); unwouE n-atip [...V.] 
a warmed-up soup. (2) to weld 
broken iron together; ti w emato 
na m£ [..'*.'] weld this iron 
for me ! 

tia [J] to flatter ; y£yitia 6s [\.\| 
don't flatter me any longer ! v. 


tie [J] to call; otie ve [/•] he 
called me. ti-ebe [,/] to read; 
oti-£re [/"*] he read it. ti-eba 

[/J to "curse juju" (in the 
meaning of "to curse", but v. 
ve [']); this is not the worst 
way of cursing a man (which is 
done with an exwae [".]). t-ihs 
(long i) [/%]!»['] to curse (not 
very seriously) ; ot-ih£ m£ •] 
he cursed me; also ot-ihg n£ 
[.-/\%] ne swore at him (same 
as ti-Ebo [/J); v. xa w £t3£ [/.], 
mu w £bo gbe ["/]. t-iko [/] to 
call a meeting, tie [J] ezd ["*] 
"to call to a lawsuit": to sum- 
mon; n-ati-£C-£zo [7**3 "who is 
called to a lawsuit": defendant 
(same as n-agugwi [/'] (v. gwi 
[ * ]) ; oxugniEZD [....]); n-oti-o6a w 
ezd [*//*] "he who has called a 
man to a lawsuit": plaintiff; v. 
otiooaEZD [....], n-ogu w ot3a gwi 
[...J'l n-D^wi [/] (v. gwi [*]). 
tiyi [ "] (1) to twist; otiyi w £e 
[.;>] he twisted it. (2) to 
become, be twisted; otiyi 
it is twisted; cf. tiyitiyitiyi 
[".."]. tiyitiyi [....], otiyici 

tiyitiyi [....] (also tiyitiyi tiyi [••./'] ) 
twisted; oru na ye tiyitiyi 
[.*. ....] this thread is twisted. 
The word also describes matter 
congealed over a wound, v. iku 

[..]; of. tiyi [/]. 

t-ih£ [/%]; cf. tie [J]. 

t-Ihi [,*%]; cf. ti 2 [*]. 

tii [ J powerful; harmonious, of a 
unanimous shout of applause; 
used with the verb we [}]. 

tiidigbgy ["J imitates the sound 
produced by the big em-£do [ / •] 
drum; used with kpe [J] or 
tu [']; v. titititititi [ ]. 

t-iko [/]; cf. tie [J]. 

tila [/] to despise; otila ve [../] 

he despises me. 

Hto [•.];#*[•]. 


tine [*•] very small; tiny, of 
babies and things; a higher 
degree than xerhe [••]; oye tine 
[ '••] it is tiny. 

t-iri [/];c/. tax [']. 

t-ise [*J; cf. ta [']. 

titi [/] to be famous; otetiti gbe 

v-oye xerhe [/ ' ••] he was 

(formerly) very famous when he 
was young; v. ti i [*]. 

titiiti i [ ## J noise made by Boras- 
sus palms in the wind ; used with 
the verb kpe [J]; v. urua [ # J. 
(This item has been contested 
by A. who wanted to substitute 
dididididi [ ] for it.) 

titiiti 2 [. . .] fat, stout, and at the 
same time short. 

titititititi [ ] imitates the 
sound produced by the small 
uke [/] drum; used with the 
verbs kpe [J] and ru [']; okp- 
£ U e t. ] "he is beating 

it t."; v. tiidigbey [•• J. 

to [ ] ( I ) to be hot (of pepper). 
(2) to burn high (of burning 
farm land). (3) to be "active", 
of an ebo or ins, i.e. quick in 
complying with prayers and 

toba [/] in toba [/] mu ['] to 

stick to. 

tobatoba [/ # J gumming together 
(occurs in a magical formula 
only) ; cf toba [/]. 

t-obo [/] added to the personal 
pronouns and, at the same time, 
followed by the possessive, it 
conveys the idea of "self"; me 
t-obo oe [...*] I myself; we 
t-obo w o you yourself (or, 

in commands: t-obo rue 
t-obo rue ru w ee [,,J'\] do it 
yourself!); fe t-obo-re [,,J t ] he 
himself; ma t-ob-ima [ ## \] we 
ourselves; wa t-ob-uwa [ # /J 

you yourselves; if a t-ob-ifa 
["..".] they themselves; if a t-ob- 
ifa w ot;u w ee ['..'J" J] they did 
it themselves; cf. obo [/](?). 
toya an interjection asking 

for the truth: "is it true? 
really? indeed". The answer is 
ise [/]. 

t-oha[/] topity;it-oha-fe[..^J 

I pity him ; cf itoha [ t < J . 
t-ohoye [."%J; cf ta [*].'" 
t-6ku [\];c/. tai [*]. 
tota [V] to sit. down; to sit. 

t-dto ['.];*/. to2["]. 

to [ ' ] to live long ; ot-utooe n-oma 
[. \..J] ne lived a long good 
life; urato ['*•] may you live 
long ! uyato kpere [..V.] "if you 
live, may it be long(?)": may 
you live long ! (a mode of address 
to the Oba of Benin, and to 
chiefs) . 

to 1 ['] to fell a tree; v. gbo ['] 
(special term referring to felling 
trees on the site chosen for a 
farm). Iterat.: tono [/]: ton- 
iku w erha ni gb-oto [..'••..] cut 
those shrubs down! (with a 
matchet) . 

to 2 ['] to dig into the ground 
(e.g. pots, poles, etc.); t-oto [*J 
to dig (into) the ground (the o 
is only nasalised in the be- 
ginning) . Iterat. : tono [/]; ton- 
oe dii3i esese n-am-ukeru y-o 

LV. /••/•>] "^g them (i.e. 
holes) deep and well so that we 
can put the yam poles in!" 
cf utoyoto [....]; v. gwa 2 [*] (to 
dig something out) . 
to 3 ["] (1) to be hot (not of taste, 
or the weather, but of liquids, 
or metal); o-enwae, oto gbe 

LA/'] De careful ("have 
sense"), it is very hot! (2) to 
roast ; ut-inya ni ne [ /' • v ] have 


you roasted that yam already? 
inya n-ato£ [,."\| roasted yam; 
c/.inyat5[/J; v. ti 3 ['], ra [J] 9 
vz [J], visvis [/], faoe [ *], l e 

[*Ltue 3 [^ 

to 4 [ ] in to ['] mu ['] (1) to 
lift up; (2) to increase; te-oi 
na mu [.J.'] lift this thing 
up! t-egbe mu [/'] "to lift 
body": to be proud; ot-egbe 
mu [/••] he is proud; cf. itej 
gbemu [...J. t-ezo mu ["*] to 
reopen a lawsuit (by appeal, 
e.g.); ot-ezo mu [,'Y] he re- 
opened the lawsuit. 

tob [/] (1) to itch; obo tolo 6s 
[/./] "my hand is itching me". 
(2) to scratch ; tol-oe [ m \\ scratch 
it! (3) to cough; in tol-ohue 

t-ota [/]; cf. ta [']. 
tu ['] (1) to shout. (2) to cry (for 
something, as a complaint); 
uyazetu, dey-uyakw-eti [...'/••] 
lit. "if you cry continuously, 
(I hope) you will stop!" (an 
angry word in response to such 
a form of discontent). (3) to 
strike (of the clock); egog-iss 
mahetu ["Y""\] rive o'clock 
has not yet struck. 
tu w asg [".] to spit ; ystu w ase ku- 
aCe ['•*.. . \] don't spit on me ! 
("splash me", i.e. by accident; 
but v. gie [J]); cf. tue 1? [J], 
tua 1 [J] to pull strongly together 
(things which are tied together) ; 
tua w eui n-ugbae ni n-oyerha 
[..."* -yJ] Pull those things 
you have tied strongly together 
so that they do not get loose! 
otuajhe ni [J* -J] he tied that 
load tightly, 
tua 2 [^] to be loud (of human 
voice and drum, stronger than 
la 2 [']; when referring to the 

voice, it is used with ukpe [/] 
"beak"); tua-kpe [/], e.g. otua 
(u)kpe rharhaarha [./*•••] ne 
spoke loudly (v. gborogboro 

tua 3 [J] to swell (of corpse). 

tua 4 [J] (1) to hasten; to hurry; 

ystua^inwina na [' / ] don't 

hurry this work! (2) to be 
hurried (of work, etc.; not "to 
be in a hurry"); inwina na tua 
S be this work is too 

much hurried (i.e. and therefore 
hard). (3) to be serious. (A. 
Biogr.) "To take serious" is ex- 
pressed by mu [ ' ] gogoogo [ ' " ] 
gbe ['] "to take too high". 

tue 1 [J] (1) to ooze out; to 
bleed; esagie yetue o-snwe na 

L\J..J.] the blood is still 
oozing out of this wound ; esagis 
tue o-egbe us [.%..,.*] I am 
bleeding ("blood is coming out 
of my body"). (2) to squeeze 
out (viz. the contents of the 
bowels of game) ; tu-ibi-af aoe ni 
essse [.'"././•] squeeze the 
bowels of this animal well out ! 
(3) to pour out (if the liquid is 
kept in a vessel with a narrow 
mouth, v. rhurhe [/]); otu-ams 

o-uko [ **]heis pouring water 

out of a calabash, 
tue 2 [J] to dress one's hair (of 
women); oxuo na ^atu-eto 

[.J.'..'] this woman is dressing 
(her) hair. 

tue 3 [J] to prepare "medicine" 
over a fire, i.e. to "fry" it in a 
pan, but without oil or lard; 
fat5-uxu\5u is nowadays 

used by the young people, but 
it is not correct, v. Oxwahe text; 

r.leQtafci;], to 3 [']. 
tus [ ] (1) to visit (a certain place). 

(2) to greet ; to salute ; koyo ! ido- 




tu-o ['''./] koyo I have come 
to salute you! cf. otue [/]. 
t-uyu [/] to stir up; to disturb; 
utuy-amE na [..V.] you have 
disturbed this water (by stirring 
up the dirt) ; cf. 1-uyu [ / ] ; z-uyu 


t-uls mu [,"] to start running; 

ot-uk mu [/*•] he has started 

running; v. rh-ule [/]. 
tuo ['] re ['] to descend; to come 

down; otuo re ne u-£y£ u-igbera 

[/.../"V] he had (already) 
come down by the time I passed 
by; tuo re o-od-uxut3u [...%. .] 
come down (from above) ! 
tu(3u [/] to have sexual inter- 
course with (used with direct 
object; not decent); v. gu ['] 
vie U\ □ ku [J], ho 

u- [. ] pron. (personal) of the 2nd 
pers. sgl. abbreviated form; 
ugb-se [.V] you killed him; 

uyare [,'\] shall you come? 
uba eze f ' 1 F.D. list: a tree, 

Ochrocarpus africanus; cf. eze 

[ # J ; v. otie ["*]. 
ube ' [ ' . ] a women's drum ; of 

varying length, may be as long 

as 4 feet; beaten alternatively 

with a drumstick and the hand ; 

played during ugie [..] and 

ehD [/]. 

ubelu [V.] a tree > Strombosta 

Ubi [ " ] the son of one among the 
Ogiaoss [_']; his name has be- 
come a symbol for wickedness, 
hence: ed-ubi [/*] a bad day; 
v. 8wer£ ["']. 

ubi [/] pointed stick used by 
farmers for making the holes for 
yam-sticks; v. gbe i ['], ogba 2 
f asEgie ['"]. 

ubi [\] a slap; cf. gbe 1 [']. 
ubido [ , # J a leopard-like animal, 

but smaller, 
ubo [/] a creeper, with a very 

thick stem; fruit eaten by 

uborhE [*..] stockings (the word 

is not much used); cf. Yor. 

ibosE J. 
udooe 1 [.*%,] act of building; 

cf. bo 1 [']. 

ubouE a [,"%.] act of predicting; 
prediction; c/. bo 2 [']. 

ububa ["J (1) a tree, Vitex 
rivularis. (2) stocks (for of- 
fenders) ; oka-jx y-ububa [,J'-\] 
he put (lit. fixed) him in the 

ubuuE [.Y] being numerous; 
great number ; crowd ; uduu-edo 
if a ya yade [ / \ W] they were 
coming in crowds ; cf. bu [ ' ] . 

udahae [,..] coral-bead strings 
(about 6) tied round the fore- 
head (worn by the Oba and some 
big chiefs) ; cf. shae [ _ ] . 

udasuE [ V ] a small blue and red 
lizard; said to be poisonous (?). 

Udazi [V ] an attribute of Osa 
[..]: Osa n-Udazi [..V.]; the 
meaning is not clear. 

ude [ * . ] enlarged spleen (mainly as 
a babies' disease) (visible swel- 
ling in the abdomen, movable; 
a pinching feeling; sleepiness 
and lack of appetite) ; v. ot>a['J 
(name of the organ) . 

ude [ , J advice ; ude n-ubu oe re 
ma'gbe [,.'/'. J'] the advice 
you have given me is very good ; 
c/.ibude [...]; v. bu 2 [/]. 

udefiagbo ['JJ " fallen into the 
world": a man without any 
support ("backstay", v. oseye 
[\ J); a full orphan; v. de 1 ['], 
fi ['], agbo [..]. 


udegwoyo [/J " fall-break " : (i) 
a tree, Swartzia fistuloides ; pro- 
duces a seed which is used as 
soap by poor people, v. eo-axue 
\.JJ\ (2) a long hanging 
coral necklace; cf. de 1 ['], 
gwoyo [/]. 

udegboto [7 J a kind of palm- 
wine; v. exwsxwE [/•]; cf. de 1 
[*], gbe 1 ['], oto [.']. 

uderhuf/] "fall-upon": (1) a big 
kind of hawk with white wing- 
tips, "gives a whistling sound". 
(2) a man who has committed a 
rape; cf. de 1 [J, rhu 2 [']. 

uds [*'] oil from fried palm- 
kernels, grease; cf. Ibo ude [/]. 

Udeni [..J name of a Bini village, 
seat of an Dxwahe [ m J m ] shrine. 

ud! [/] (1) the oil palni, Elaesis 
guineensis; udi w uxui3u [.'...] a 
drink obtained from the* oil 
palm; the cut starts from the 
spot where the palm bunch 
begins, no other part of the tree 
suffers (lit. "palm of the top- 
side"); this is the best kind of 
drink to be given as an offering 
to a god. (2) a kind of white 
water-yam which is very long 
(hence the appellation) . 

udia [/] tsetse-fly; udi-eni [/'•] 
"elephant-fly": a big stinging 

udloe [.~Y] courage; cf. di 1 [*]. 

udiuiCs [/~\] bein g deep; depth; 
cf. dim [/]. 

udoue thinness; leanness; 

cf. do [*]. 

udu [.J (1) liver; in udu n-sko 
[..">] "udu of the abdomen". 
(2) lungs; in udu n-ohoya [.//] 
the "empty udu". (3) heart; 
v. skokoduf *X],okadi [J']. 

ududu [...] lump; udud-ugbe 
[*'*'] (note the tone!) "a lump 

of a stone"; udud-uue [/,%] a 
lump of salt, v. ukp-uosdugie 
[ \ . . ] (* ne better expression) ; 
udud-uos-bo [."/*] a lump of 
sugar; ududu w eoaxue [,'.,/ J] 
a ball of soap (native soap is 
sold in balls); v. oso [ '], osous 

uduohoyo [ m J a tree, with light 
wood, Sterculia tragacantha. 

uduoudi [ ] (also udeoudi) 

suddenly; ode ku oo-duuudi 
[//...] he dashed against me 
all of a sudden (unintention- 

ufere [' ] any instrument blown 
from one end ; fife, bugle, whistle 
(the player is olufere ["..]), 
(for whistle, enwiso [/J (Engl.) 
may be used) ; cf. Yor. fere [ # J ; 
v. ekpere [."%.] flute, i.e. an in- 
strument played from the side. 

ufieos [.\J act of "clearing" the 
bush; cf. fie [/]; v. ifie [/]. 

ufoCs [.~\.] end; et3i re w omaCo- 
fous [ /\J "things do not 
happen that have (Ce [J]) no 
end": everything has an end; 

ufo [/], also ofoe [ m \\ the mes- 
senger of Ogi-uwu [."*], the 
King of Death ; its head is in the 
middle of the body, hands and 
feet issuing immediately from the 
head (feet up, and hands down- 
ward) ; it seizes sick people and 
carries them to efii5i [ / J , and it 
becomes visible to a man who 
is about to die; if the patient is 
delirious, it means that he is 
going to be seized by it. This is 
invariably regarded as fatal; 
consequently when this is likely 
to happen the witch doctor is 
called in at once; he dances in 
order to please ufo [/] and 



avert it from its prey. Another 
name for it is uko n-sfiCi zee 

" tne messenger which 
the underworld has sent". 

ufua [/] a kind of ikp§ [\] "red 
yam", but white. 

uga [ # J small vertical poles be- 
tween the uhoho [ ## J at eru 
[/] (yam stack); the yams are 
tied to them by means of 
creepers and cane. 

ugaga [V.] two trees, Bridelia 
micrantha and Cuviera nigrescens 
(F.D. list ogangan). 

ugao£ [/%.] W act °f serving, e.g. 

for a wife, to one's father-in-law ; 

e.g. e(3i w ugai3£ gifts made 

as part of that service for a wife. 

(2) Church-service; cf. ga 1 [']. 
ugiat5s[/'J cowries of the value of 

about 6s. 6d. (obsolete). 
Ugiaus [."%.] the first Ishan- 

speaking village on the Ekpoma 

Road; six miles north of Eho 

ugie [/] twenty. 

ugie [ # J (1) (next) occasion; (next) 
time; ugi-eki [/ ] the next 
market (ski n-ogbera [.," J] the 
last market); yade ugie n-ode 

[' y] "come at the next 

occasion!", i.e. at an indefinite 
time (said when there is no time 
to attend to a guest) . (2) Any of 
the Dba's ceremonies. The prin- 
cipal ugies are: ugi-ama [/""] 
(ama [/] is one of the Dba's 
gods) ; ugi-azama [."'.] (for the 
Dba's children) ; ugi-oui w ozuote 

[. J"\ ( a * which titles are 
given) ; ixurhe [ ] (devoted to 
Otoe [..], the ground); ugi-op 
[.'.J ( a cycle of ugies opened 
by ami-oto [.'..], it consists of 
ugies devoted to the Dba's an- 
cestors which take place at in- 

tervals of five days, and which 
are called ugi-ifo [ / ' ] or vfi [ /], 
and ends with ugi-erh-oba [ t ], 
the ugie made for the Dba's 
father, after about three months) . 
After this period, the annual 
ancestors' festival eho [ / ] seems 
to be celebrated in Benin. After 
eho, there is, according to one 
informant, another cycle of 
ugies devoted to the royal an- 
cestors which is called ugi-igu 
[ '•], and which again consists 
of ugi-ip's leading up to ugi- 
erh-oba [."'*]. After this, i.e. 
after about four months, orhu 
[ '] is performed, and an ugie 
called emobo [/"](?). This is 
followed by igws, the annual 
festival devoted to one's Head, 
which is performed first by the 
Dba, then by his people. After 
igws, the annual war-procession 
isiokuo [."%.] was held (no longer 
now) which included egbala 
['"] and amufi [...]• Then 
comes agwe [_], the New- Yam 
festival at the Eguae, which is 
followed by the general practice 
of ihua [/], giving new yam to 
the gods, and finally agw-oxene 
[//]. (The order of these ugies 
is very doubtful, and the col- 
lected statements differ, neither 
is their number complete), 
ugieoe [ ] comparison ; cf. igieui 

[...]. gie 1 U\ 
ugi§i3£ [.~\] act °f burning; 

blaze; cf. gil [/]. 
ugii)£ leaking; cf. gi [*]. 

u g° [. ] a sort °f re( i y am (*kp£ 

[' ]j which has gone wild; v. 
ogigba [/YL ema 2 [..]. 
Ugo [ , J two villages distinguished 
in the following way : Ugo n-iyek- 
orhiooo [./"..] "the Ugo be- 

hind the Ossiomo River"; and: 
Ugo n-iyek-ikpoba [..'*...] "the 
Ugo behind Ikpoba" (lying on 
the road to Agbor) . 
ugoos [."Y] (i) act of shouting. 
(2) songs accompanying the 
akaba [...] dances of the 
Oxwahs [, '}.] cult ; sung by the 
head-dancers while the women 
dancers clap hands. When the 
head-dancers pause, the women 
sing uke [',] songs, and both 
groups stamp their feet as 
accompaniment (gb-uke [',})) 

cf- go [*]. 

ugogie [ mt J worship (Akugbe) ; cf. 
go [}), ugie [.J. 

ugogo ['/] (1) Bini name for the 
Sobo tribal marks: a straight 
line leading from the middle of 
the forehead to the tip of the 
nose. (2) ugog-iyeke ['A..] 
spine (same as uv-iyeke [*"\..], 

V. UV1£ ["]); Cf. gOgODgD ['"]. 

ugu [*J a tree, Saccoglottis gabo- 
nensis; its bark is pounded and 
mixed with palm wine in order 
to make, it red ; ugu mu^anyo 

na w sssse ['."*.. V] tne u £ u nas 
changed this wine very much. 

ugu [."M vulture, Common or 
Hooded V.; cf. Yor. igu [•']. 

uguomaina [',/'] lit. " you do not 
help an old man to cut it": a 
tree with very soft wood, Disco- 
glypremna coloneura. 

ugwe [/] (1) lid, cover (e.g. of a 
pot); ugw-skpokl [/'J ''cover 
of leather box": a tree, Hannoa 
klaineana. (2) ugw-akpata [ / " ] 
"cover of native harp ' ' : (besides 
the literal meaning) a curved 
tuft of hair above the forehead, 
worn by the Oba and by all the 
chiefs as a sign of their rank; 
also: tuft of feathers on the 

head of some birds, e.g. awe ["] 
and esikpoxo [/'J. (The latter 
meaning was disputed by A. 
who said that osusu [ >#> ] should 
be used for a tuft of feathers). 
(3) shade. 
ugwowE [*\] "does-not-fit-foot": 
natural cutting or hollow (with- 
out water), so narrow that both 
feet cannot be placed together 
in it; there is one near the 
village of Ogba [/]; cf. gwa3 ['], 
ows [ J (the "not" is contained 
in the* high u- [']); v. iya [.J, 
szs [..]. 

ugba [\] a dance performed e.g. 
at second burials; the dancers, 
with rattles round their feet, 
move in revolving circles, side- 
ways ; cf. d-ugba [ ' J . 

ugbadiys [ ] "killer of fowls", 
a disease of chickens: the 
victims are sleepy first, then 
giddy ; they spread their wings, 
gasp, and knock their heads on 
the ground; watery discharge 
from the beak; same as lukuj 
luku [ ' ']; cf. gbe 1 ['], adiye 
["/]; v.'okuku [..J (dull, cold 
weather is said to be mainly re- 
sponsible for this disease), 

ugbaro [ #> v.] (1) eye-brow; fore- 
head. (2) face; cf. aro [..]; v. 

uharo ["%.]• 
ugbe ["] missile; stone (that is 

thrown) . 

ugbe [ '] swelling of lower abdo- 
men, probably due to distended 

ugbebe [ ] writing utensils; cf. 

gbs ebe [/]; v. ukeke [/']. 
ugbefe [ ] side of body; cf. 

efi [..]'.*' 
ugbeto J "hair-clipper": scis- 
sors; this is the native 
expression, but v. alumag 


[.//], etuheru [./%.]; cf. gbe i 

ugbeoE (i) flogging, (2) 

dancing; c/. gbe 1 [']. 

ugbezaro [ • ] a tree, Antro- 
caryon mict aster) the fruit, called 
gbsezaro [\ J, has a shell 
covered with many cavities ; the 
shells are put over objects in 
order to keep thieves away 
from them. A. was in doubt 
about the existence of the name 
ugbezaro and described gbse" 
zaro as the fruit of iyoha [...]. 

ugb§ [ # J when; probably origin- 
ally "time", because it is 
followed by the relative particle 
n- or t)- "in"; further, there is 
ugbs-so [_']. {a) sometimes; at 
times ; ugbs-so oyar-owa [ . / V " "] 
at times he will be at home. 
(b) perhaps, v. kee [J] ; ugb§-s- 
oyar-owa [..'"•] perhaps he is 
at home ; cf. ugbugbshia [/'•]• 

ugbsku [_] belt; cf. gba [ ], 

£ku [/]. 

ugbsrherhe [ ] deplaced fonta- 

nelle (with a baby) ; cf. gbe 1 [ ' ] 

(here, perhaps, "to push in"), 

erherhe [..J. 
ugbizin [ ] cork-screw (also 

ugbizi, ugbezl, ugbuzin) ; cf. gbe 1 

[*], ezin 

ugbo ["] farm; ugb-ogbo ["J 
new farm ; gi-ayari-ugbo [,J'"'] 
let us go to the farm ; v. ogo [ _ J . 

ugbodoko [ ] (ugbodioko, or 

-lioko are also heard); bone; 
ugbodok-osa [.*"..] ' 'bone of 
chimpanzee": a tree, Randia 
dadantha ; its wood is very dur- 
able ; v. uvs [ t J . 

ugbogiofioi ["'.J (1) a monster 
living at Efioi [/J; it has three 
(or seven) heads and a human 
body; it breathes flames, blood, 

smoke, etc.; was believed to be 
the senior of the iyele [\J 
age-group at sfioi [/J. Oc- 
casionally carved in wood. It is 
only considered as a kind of 
bogey, and there is no belief in 
it. (2) jocular appellation for 
somebody who has lost his in- 
cisor-teeth; cf. ogie [ ], ofim 


ugbore [. J (1) the shea-butter 

tree, Parkia biglobosa. (2) shea- 
butter (obtained from Hausa 
people) . 

ugbogbo ['/] a tree, Kigelia 
africana (?) ; its bark falls off in 
patches; v. rhua [J]. 

ugboxa [ ## J a tree, Bombax 

ugbudia [ _ ] " tsetse-killer ' ' : fly- 
killer; cf. gbe i f], udia [/]. 

ugbugbe [/*] (1) tree with scaffold 
on which victims of certain 
Bini sacrifices (to the sun and 
the rain) were crucified. (2) 
Cross (in the Christian sense). 
(3) crosswise ; omu w erha (u) gbu- 

S De [.... *] ne is carrying the 
tree (or stick) crosswise (so as to 
block the whole breadth of the 
path; boys do so to stop their 
playmates overtaking them on 
the road), 
ugbugbshia [ / • • ] (1) often ; ugbu- 
gbs hia et-iyas-eoa [.'"•/'. \] "it 
is often (that) I go (lit. 'reach') 
there". (2) always; imi-3(£ w 
u)-gbugb£ hia t>-i ayari-ugbo 

[..:•• J'"'] ("M" [..] are 
left without tone-marks above; 
ri-ugbo is possibly [/'] in slow 
speech) I see him always when 
I am going to the farm ; cf. ugb§ 
[ # J (identical?), 
uya [.J a quadrangle in the 
8guae [ #< ] where an Dba is 


buried and has his shrine; 
formerly, each Oba had his own 
quadrangle which was made 
after his death, 
tfyas [ _ ] difference ; uya(s) ona xi 
r '1 the difference is this; 

i ..... j ' 

uyae ni xi ra * s tnat 

different? cf. 1-uyae [*J. 

Uyara [ # mm ] a village with mixed 
Jekri-So bo population, on or near 
the boundary of Warri Province. 

uy-ava, [/*] (i) thunderbolt; be- 
lieved to be thrown by Ogi-uwu 
[/••] "the King of Death", 
i.e. the god of Thunder (Yor. 
Jag go [./]); it is used in the 
awase [.%.] that is kept on 
the shrine of Osu [/]. It is 
obtained by pouring four tins of 
oil into the hole where it has 
fallen down: then it comes up 
and can be exhumed. The uloko 
[/ J tree ("Iroko") is believed 
to withstand the uy-ava, while 
other trees are broken to pieces ; 
this is due to its importance for 
witches. Uy-ava are, therefore, 
said to be found if uloko wood 
is sawed ; cf. uya- in uyaoa [...], 
ava [/]. (2) the main "pebbie" 
on the shrine of Oxwahe [ #- / J; 
it is red, and in the shape of an 
axe (Oxw.). 

uyaoa [ _ # ] axe ; uyai3-5ra [ / * J an 
axe with a broad blade; for- 
merly used for splitting wood; 
cf. uyava [/*]. 

uyaoe [/Y] (1) being dear, i.e. 
expensive; dearness. (2) pride, 
(in a bad sense); cf. ya [J*]. 

uyaeue [ m ^ # ] same as eyae [/]; act 
of dividing; cf. ya(e) [J]. 

uye [/] dances ; any performance ; 
show; cf. ye [J]. 

uye [\] entrance of a village; v. 
agba [..], egbo [ J, oms [*']. 

uyegbe [_J "look body": (1) 
mirror. (2) glass (but not 
vessel!). (3) uyegb-aro [/..] 
"eye-glass": spectacles; cf. ye 
[/], egbe [/]. 

uyeoe [,"\J look, appearance; 
uyeoe fus m-oha gbe ['.J'-.] 
your appearance is terrible 
(e.g. when a man is ill, or 
angry; or referring to a masked 
dress); cf. ye [J], uye [/]. 

uysde [_J (1) "day-looker": 
clock; watch; v. uteys [...], 
umusye [...], sgogo ["']. (2) 
spectacles (older than uyegb-aro 

[/..]); cf. ye [^],£de [;]. 
UyotS ['/] (1) name of a Bini 
village near 8kehua [/*] through 
which the Bini people made 
their first contacts with Euro- 
peans : ' ' Gwatto " ; a certain sib 
has its central area at Uyoto; 
their headman is the oh-5ku [ / •] 
there, i.e. the priest of Oku [/] 
or Oloku [ " ' ] . Other members 
of the sib are found at Jesse 
(Ijehe [ m /]) where there is also an 
hereditary priest and chief Oh- 
5ku [ '*]. Jesse is said to have 
Sobo population. The sib- 
greeting is la w oku ['/]; v. 

uyuya [ "V ] closed room in a Bini 
house with one or two entrances ; 

uyuya [."Y],[."'] (different) species, 
kinds, sorts, ways; uyuya doua- 
doyoe nwa lit. "in 

a different way everyone is 
sensible": every man has dif- 
ferent ways of thought (if 
something is interpreted in 
several ways); cf. uyae 

uyuyo [" '] empty shell of a snail. 

uyuyuuu [ ] (1) stump of tree 

that is nearly level with the 


ground. (2) also: roots of trees 
swelling out of the ground; v. 
ezi [.J, utukpufcu [...J. 
uhabo ["•] bow (for shooting); 
cf abo, obo [/]; v. ifeus [\J, 

uhae ['J well; uhae na w ir-ame 
UJ. J.] this well does not 
hold (ro 1 [J]) water; uhae na 
s-agba-eha [V.*..*] (se [']) this 
well is three layers deep. 

uhaeso ["•] swallow; cf. iso [/](?). 

uhaha [ M# J (1) a small plank used 
as a pad when carrying yams. 

(2) uhah-eku [//] the small of 
the back. 

uharo ["%.] forehead; cf. ehae 

[..]» a r<> [..]; v. ugbaro [*^j. 

une [."] M lower end of a long 
object: uh-inya [/•] lower end 
of a yam; un-D^ede [."\.J do. 
of a plantain ; c/. uh-erhs [ * ~\ J ; 
uh-erha [ '•] lower part of a 
felled tree that is standing up- 
right. (2) bottom of a vessel: 
uh-axe [/•] bottom of a pot; 
uh-odo [/'] bottom of a mortar. 

(3) vulva. (4) anus, 
uh-erhe [ "V ] a stick of firewood 

one end of which has caught 
fire, also uw-erhe [ * ^ ] ; cf. uhe 


Uhe [\] Ife (Yor. tones: [-.]); the 
name occurs also in the morning 
greeting of a certain sib, de 
la w uheo [/'.J; v. egbee 

Uhe [ # J a village on the Bini- 
Yoruba boundary. 

uheweoe [/*\J breathipg ; breath ; 
c/. hewe [/]. 

uhi [ ] law; custom; uhi na 
wegbe gbe [./.'*•] this law is 
very strict. 

uhiaoe [.~\J (1) keeping up 
appearances. (2) struggling (to 
recover one's health) ; cf. hia [)]. 


uhip [ ' "\ J a big kind of monkey 
(N.W.Th.: baboon). 

uhioiaue [/*\J swelling (of a 
whole limb) ; uhimau-obo ue na 
mu u-oha gbe [/' •///•] lit. 
' 'the swelling of this my hand 
makes me afraid much"; cf. 
hiuia [/] ; v. hue [J], 

uno [."] a trap for birds: lime 
obtained from a creeper. 

uhobo [ _ ] the Sobo people; 
uhoboriabe [...'*] lit. " the Sobos 
are guilty": a kind of red yam 
that is said to have come from 
the Sobo country comparatively 
recently; its surface is "hairy", 
and it ripens within five months. 

uhoho [ ] the space between 
two main poles (utoyoto [....]) 
of a yam stack (era [/]); equals 
2 ekp-Dxe ["•]; 2 uhoho equal 

1 ewe [..]. 

uhoro ] pawpaw; uho^-ebo 
rhierhie gbe ["••/•] "Euro- 
pean pawpaw" (a special kind 
of p.) is very good. 

uhosa [ _ J a kind of leaf covered 
with pimples; also called eb- 
uhosa [ /\ . J and uhosa n-ofi fi 
[....'%]; c/.osa[.J(?). 

uhuei)£ [ ^ J swelling (not a whole 
limb); uhueo-eke n-oxia ras so 
fua gDgoogD [. -...7 V...] "the 
swelling at the place that pains 
you bulges out"; cf. hue [/]; 
v. hioia [/]. 

uhuki [ V J an influence or power 
(spirit?) which causes people to 
do things that are to their dis- 
advantage, and seem to be 
senseless. Uhuki is said to be 
caused by ill-treatment of, or 
lack of consideration for, one's 
wife or husband in the preceding 
reincarnation. The actual cause 
seems to be the "swearing" 

uttered during one's previous re- 
incarnation by the injured party 
against the offender. Offences 
leading to this swearing and 
consequent uhuki are e.g. a 
man's not giving his wife food 
and clothes, or not having inter- 
course with her on the day when 
she purines herself after men- 
struation, or a wife's promiscuous 
way of living (so that the 
husband forsakes her), or her 
omitting to mourn for her de- 
ceased husband properly (v. xie 
[J]); uhuki okpokp-ee 
"uhuki (it is that) is troubling 
him (or her)". The "trouble" 
caused by uhuki may manifest 
itself in very different ways, and 
in different degrees of intensity. 
A man may refuse to marry and 
may hate women, or even be 
temporarily impotent or mad; 
with a woman it is believed to 
be the cause of frigidity and cer- 
tain misdemeanours. A sacrifice 
can "bring them (i.e. the uhukis) 
to sense": a "doctor" makes 
an image representing the hus- 
band or wife, respectively, of 
the preceding reincarnation, and 
makes a sacrifice to it. After- 
wards, the image is buried 
with the sacrifice (ore w uhuki 
[,,'J,] he buried the uhuki). 
The uhuki was said not to be 
the dead man (or woman) 

uhukpa [V']> [*•'] (i) once; 
ru w se w uhukpa [.J* J*] do it 
once (and also: "at once"). 
(2) at once; iksk-ore wamu bu- 
hukpa [\J.\J /'] his bicycle 
broke at once. 

uhuoova [/'J sickness (general 
term); uhuuova byo us [."...'] 

"sickness is paining me": I am 
ill ; cf. emiaos [...]. 
uhut5u[/J (1) head; it is believed 
to report to one's £hi [_] every 
evening about one's doings, and 
it is given sacrifices, v. gws [J] ; 
hence uhuou da [../.] ''bad 
head": bad luck; uhuuu w esi 
[/...] " good head ": good luck ; 
an idiomatic expression is uhuou 
yay-o [.'/"%] " head takes for it " : 
you, or he, will get into hot water 
for it (when scolding somebody 
for some mischief he has done), 
(in a proverb) . uhutS-of hoi [//J 
"head of corpse": skull; uhu(3- 
elao [/,.] wooden sculptures 
representing heads, forming part 
of the ancestral shrines (v. erha 
[••] and iye ["']) in Bini 
nouses. The Oba's and Ezomo's 
[""] uhuu-elao are of brass. 
(2) upside; upward; on top; 
uhuo-sfe [..,/.] on top of it; 
uhuC-Ezs [/_] up-stream; uhuo- 
oke [//] up-hill ; uhuo-owa [//] 
"top of house": roof (from out- 
side, v. srhurhuuu [....]). (3) 
message (in connection with 
gie ['] "to send"); cf. uhuoova 

uhuoufu [..."] period of nine days 
(2 eke [/]); uyade o-uhuoufu 
['• '] you should come with- 
in nine days ; uhumi-srs [...J.] 
(l not nasalised) nine days from 
to-day; cf. ihifi [_']. 

ukata [ ## J straw-hat, usually erh- 
ukata [ V. .]; cf Yor. akata [..J. 

ukaoafe [.'%.] smallness; small 
size; cf. kaoa [/]. 

uke [/] (1) top of a thing lying 
on the ground, e.g. a load that 
has been put down, or a tree 
lying on the ground (ogwe ['.]), 
v. uhuou [/.]; mu-£ y-uk-£re 



["\ t J.] put it on top of it! 

(2) a pad used to raise women's 
hair in some styles of hair- 
dressing, e.g. okuku [..*],' it was 
mostly made of itaxue ["%.]. 

(3) a stopper put into native 
guns in order to prevent the 
powder and charge from falling 
out ; it is made from rolled coco- 
nut fibre ; the gun is charged as 
follows: first the powder (exae 
[* J) is put in, then uke, then 
igele [...] (shot) or efu [..] 
(bullet) which is again followed 
by an uke. (4) a small round 
drum used by men. 

uke ['J stamping (in dancing); 
v. gbe 1 [']. 

uke 1 [. .] (pi. ike) (1) (cross-legged) 
cripple. (2) porter at the £guae 
[ # J : cripples are doing the 
service of porters at the Sguae, 
because they are reliable: they 
do not steal nor commit adultery 
at the 8ris [/] (harem), because 
they cannot run away. (3) 
crooked, in uk-ads [/*] hook 
for picking fruit; v. ape [_]. 

uke 2 [_] something hollow: 
(1) tortoise-shell, also uk-egwi 
[ '•]. (2) lap, when followed by 
omu w e nya uk-egbe [.'..'] she 
(or, he) took it on her (his) lap 
(a baby e.g.). 

ukeke [/'] stick; ukeke n-aya 
gbebe [.'./.']" stick for writing' ' : 
pen ; ukeke n-aya kpema [,'.,' J ,] 
' 1 stick for playing drum ' ' : drum- 
stick; ukeke n-aya bowa [.*..'.'] 
' ' sticks for house-building ' ' : 
beams put on the walls in order 
to support the rafters (n-aya: 
lit. "which one takes"); ukek- 
ovia [/*'] "sticks of Dvia" : two 
sticks knocked against each 

other by the masked dancers of 
Dvia [/] (there is no drumming 
at these dances); the correct 
name is, however, ikpata [ " ']. 

ukelu ["J (1) a wooden mallet. 
(2) piece of wood (stuck through 
an iron cramp behind the door) : 

uki[_] (1) moon; uki de ro '] 
"the moon has hidden herself" : 
the moon is covered by clouds; 
uki h-em-ota (he \J}) l.J\.] 
"the moon is carrying the even- 
ing fufu": the moon is coming 
out late in the night, e.g. when it 
is full moon ; uki ota [.'..]" even- 
ing moon": early moon (when 
waxing and still small) ; uki^ogbo 
[ t 'J new moon (i.e. the very 
small waxing moon) ; ovi agb-eds 
[."V] (meaning not clear, it 
means perhaps: "makes the 
night bright like the day"): 
praise-name of the moon when 
shining brightly; uki ra uki 
d e "moon passes, 

moon comes": the period when 
there is no moon; during this 
time all the evil forces are be- 
lieved to be "travelling"; yade 
u-uki n-oba ['..., J] come while 
the moon is shining! (2) month; 
of. aki- [ ' ] ; v. ho uro [ ' ], ko-ro 

uko ["] calabash; uk-edob [*\] 
a pot or calabash where some 
itaxue [ ' , ] is kept with water 
and red mud, for the purpose of 
rubbing (dob [/]) the walls of 
a house, uk-egbo ["'J calabash 
for holding water and other 
liquids; uk-axue ["*] calabash 
used in taking a bath (also uk- 
sgb-axue [*"*]), v. uwawa [...]; 
uk-eo-axus [" J J] calabash for 
holding soap. 


ukobozo [ ] also ukoyobozo, 

Latham's or Forest Francolin 
(or bush-fowl) . 

ukohuou [ ] " head-supporter ' ' : 

pillow; cf. ke i [J], uhuou [/J. 

ukoko [\ J pipe. 

ukoko ['"] (i) swelling, e.g. ukok- 
od-iyeke [*"\..] swelling on 
the back. (2) Something bulg- 
ing out, in ukok-owE [ * " % J 
ankle; ukoko-bo [**"*] can be 
used instead of igu-abo [/'*] 
''elbow"; v. igw£ 1 [ m J. 

ukokoyo calabash used for 

storing medicines; cf. uko ["]. 

ukoni [ J kitchen, at the women's 
side of the Bini house. 

ukoti [ "] hair-pin; cf. Yor. 

ikoti [>]• 

uko 1 [\] (1) messenger; uk-oba 
[ " * ] messenger of the Dba ; ukw- 
eks ["J attendant of an Dba 
or chief, going in front of his 
master ; also supposed to be with 
the ihes Oloku [""] and Dx- 
wahe lJ t ] and Igbayo [V.] 
when they are " travelling " ; 
uk-sbo ['"Yl {a) (invisible) mes- 
senger of a god affecting offen- 
ders against the god with 
sickness; (b) man employed by 
a Native Court to lead litigants 
to a shrine in order to take an 
oath ; (c) man leading a proces- 
sion of juju masqueraders. He 
picks up anything that drops 
out of the masquerade-dress; 
uk-ususbo [*"Y.] "messenger of 
accompanying (or, leading) 
juju": same as uk-ebo. (2) 
worry; v. kae 4 [J]. 

ukoyofo [.'.'] (idiomatic) (1) irre- 
parable damage; ona t-ukoySfo 

L.7] (re [']) this damage 
cannot be recovered; v. also 
mu [']. (2) action of always 

reminding a debtor of his debt ; 

ukoos [.^y] (1) act of planting. 
(2) act of erecting the shrine of 
a god, or of Erha ["] (at the 
"second burial", on the day 
when the arha [ t ] -ceremony is 
finished) ; cf. ko [']. 

ukSos 1 [,\.] being foolish; 
foolishness; cf. k5 1 [']. 

uk5t5£ 2[."Y] (1) grazing, of cattle ; 
cf. ko 2 £'].. (2) wandering of a 
doctor in search of practice. 

uku [ "] a praise-name of the Dba ; 
cf. Ibo uku [**]); v. Dba ["]. 

ukuatie [/Y] act of injuring one- 
self; ukuai5-Eny£ [.**•] snake- 
bite; cf. kua [J]. 

ukugba [_J belt; ukugb-ooi w a- 
tueuue [. . . ] ''belt of small 
pulsing boils 1 ' : probably chronic 
inflammation of groin glands, 
e.g. due to syphilis. 

ukuoki [** J (1) a piece of cloth or 
some leaves forming a round 
pad which one puts on the head 
when carrying loads. (2) pad for 
silencing doors. 

ukuse [*'J calabash rattle mostly 
used by women when dancing, 
by men, e.g. at the ohoyo [ #< J, 
ugba ['.], and emaba [...] 

ukuos [ ~\ ] act of playing; cf. 
ku [/], iku [ ]. 

ukwsbs [...] "ebs [.J folder, or, 
lowerer": title of a chief who 
carries the Dba's zbs (sword) 
when the Dba goes out; he also 
hands the ada ["] (sword) to 
the omada [ , . J who is going to 
carry it in front of the Dba 
(when £b£ is used, ada is left 
behind). So he is in charge of 
both the ceremonial swords. 
£b§ is raised only in presence 



of the Dba, otherwise it must be 
lowered; cf. kuo [J] (here "to 
lower"), eb§ [ # J. 

ukpa [ " ] (artificial) light ; lantern ; 
cf urhukpa [..J. 

ukpabo [ ] a wooden plate used 
to wash hands before eating 
fufu; cf kpe ['], abo [/]. 

ukpaf £ [/J hollow in the floor of 
Bini and Yoruba houses, in the 
rooms called iku [ # \|, to which 
the rain falling through an 
opening in the roof is led, cf the 
Roman piscina at the atrium; 
ukpaf -ogbore [ ] hollow along 
the inside of the front part of 
odi [ " ] , the compound wall ; it 
goes as far as the gate-part of 
odi is roofed. 

ukpako [" ] toothpick, chewing- 
stick; ukpak-eka [****] "tooth- 
pick of Eka (Ika) people": two 
trees, viz. Lonchocarpus griffo- 
nianus and Hymenostygia afzelia ; 
cf kpe ['], ak5 [_]; v. edia 
nukpako [./"J. 

ukparo [ "] a dangerous disease 
called "black- tongue", due to 
bowel complaints (ezsgizegi w uw- 
eko [ # \] "diarrhoea of 
inside of abdomen"); there is a 
small swelling over the stomach 
and lack of appetite, pain in the 
joints, headache, and no stool; 
in the beginning there is a slight 

ukpe ["] two trees, used as fire- 
wood only; ukpe n-exwi [*.'*], 
"black" u., Phialodiscus uni- 
jugatus; ukpe n-ofua ['.'*], 
"white" u., Blighia sapida. 

ukpenwe [ * ' J visible pulsation of 
heart; palpitation. 

uk P e [.'] # 00 tip, point; ukp- 
af aus [/'J tip of the tongue; 
ukp-eho ['•] ear-lobe; ukp- 

enws ['\] tip of breast (male 
and female); ukp-asoro [/"] 
point of a spear. (2) beak, also 
ukp-ahiaoe [ / \ J beak of a bird ; 
ukp-Dxoxo [/-J "beak of a 
fowl": a style of hair-dressing 
worn by the wives of an Dba 
(iloi [" ]); there are said to be 
two different sub-styles. This 
ukp-oxoxD can be seen on the 
female attendants accompany- 
ing the idol of the goddess Olo- 

ku ["*] and Igbayo [V.]- uk P e 
r-syodi [ ( '\J a leaf used in 

composing charms; very sweet, 

used as a cough cure for children. 

ukpeku [/] a hook thrown 
during ibako [ _ ] , hunting by 
encircling an area of bush ; they 
are used in the areas of Isi [ . J 
and Iyek-orhiooo [."..]. 

ukpo [/] year; ukpukpo [/ ] 
every year; ukpukp-okpia na 
yaz-ihana [/ every year 

this man (usually) makes ihana 
(the ordinary sacrifice to one's 
father ; the sentence implies that 
the man is very poor because he 
makes ihana only, instead of 
eho [.']); the year is worship- 
ped at Dza [\]; during its 
annual festival, called eh-oxoxo 
[.'*.], and denoting the end of 
the year, the priest asks whether 
the coming year will be ukpo 
n-aos [..%.] "a female year", 
or ukpo n-Dwse [./%.], " a m3 ^ e 
year"; the first expression 
means "a mild year", the 
second, a year of bad luck and 
many deaths (in the English of 
my informant a "leap-year"); 
the worship of the year is possibly 
of Ika origin; cf. (e)ne [']. 

ukpo [\] something raised: (1) 
altar. (2) same as ogiukpo [ J 


dais, where the Dba or a chief 
receives visitors. (3) couch, bed, 
a raised niche in Bini houses ; ukp- 
eke [*Y] mud-bed; ukp-erha 
["'•] wooden (European) bed. 
(4) (modern usage) Government 
road, the point of comparison 
being either its being broad and 
smooth; or perhaps its being 
cut out and, therefore, having 
high borders. (5) rank, position 
(relative to that of others); 
ukpo n-uye kpob gbe [' ' ' •] the 
rank in which you are is very 
high (lit. "great"), 
ukpoyo [/'] pi. ikpiyo a single 
cowrie; many cowries, ukpoy- 
uzo [/'J "cowrie of antelope": 
something white in the eye-ball 
of the uzo [\] antelope; hence, 
a disease of the eye ; the affected 
eye looks like that of uzo, i.e. 
the middle of the eye-ball has 
a white spot ; it impairs the sight 
considerably. (Not identical 
with aro n-os-oze [.."'].) cf. 

ukpokpo [\ J staff, stick, for 
walking or fighting. 

ukpokpo [ ## J trouble. 

ukpomobis [.VJ the Black Bee- 
eater (and also name for all 
the sunbirds, e.g. the Scarlet- 
Breasted Sunbird); "a yellow 
bird, smaller than okpa [/] ; has 
no nest, but digs holes in the 
sides of pits". 

ukpo [ J cloth; ukp-ehe [/•] 
cloth worn during menstruation. 

ukpobia [,YJ a squirrel similar 
to uxorho [ # ], but a little 
smaller (ota [ J is still smaller, 
and axiexis [ /] the smallest). 
It lives in tree-holes, but it is 
not "smoked out" like axisxie; 
its holes are covered with mud 

at night so that it is choked and 
can be taken out by means of 
uk-ads [/'] (v. uke 1 [..]); it is 

ukpobos [/Y] being large; big 
size; cf. kpoio [/]. 

ukpu [\] (1) cup. (2) tin; ukpu_ 
enw-smila ["**.'] (cow)-milk 
tin. (3) a kind of round water- 
yam (white); v. igiorua ['J]. 

ukpukps ["J a kind of dance or 
physical training for men and 
boys accompanied by singing; 
in tightly closed files the dancers 
quickly advance and retire 
perhaps originally a war-dance, 
it is now mostly danced before 
wrestling, in order to attract 
others to join the match, or 
when a chief who has obtained 
a title goes around the town in 
a procession in order to thank 
the Dba and the chiefs. 

ukputu ["J a tree, Bosquiea 
angolensis; its latex looks like 
blood; "doctors" rub their 
exwae [' J charm with it in 
order to make it unbreakable, 
because the latex gums it 
together ; its leaf is greatly liked 
by goats, but it intoxicates them 
and kills them if eaten in large 

ukpuoedugie [' Y .] a lump of salt 
found in salt-bags, as the re- 
sult of dampness ; v. ududu [ ( t J . 

ulakpa [ # /] red soil used in house- 
building: where the mud is too 
black or too sandy, it it mixed 
with ulakpa; cf. Yor. ilskpa [_•]. 

ulat3s [.%.] sound, of instruments, 
bells, rattles, and any piece of 
iron; cf. la 2 [ ]. 

ulelefe [ ] small ant-hills in the 

Ip • • • • mi 

bush made by the ant eriri 
["']; there are two different 


sorts: ulelef-odi [."".] "dumb 
ant-hill ' ' : an ant-hill without a 
"cap" or top; ulelefe n-orhu w 
srhu [....'.'*] "capped ant-hill"; 
the top or cap is shaped like an 

ule [/] running away; cf. k [J]. 

ulsko [ <tt ] a charm with a bell 
attached to it, worn round the 
neck by pregnant women; it is 
worn during the whole day, but 
is especially important at meals ; 
thus the child in the womb is 
made to partake of the food ; it 
also prevents miscarriage; cf. 

la [•](?), Eko [Al- 
ulsmo [/'] idiomatic word for a 

special sort of calabash used for 
drinking palm-wine by the old 
people (young people drink out 
of tumblers), and by wine- 
tappers for scooping the wine 
out of the big clay wine-pot 
(ax-anyo [.*'], v. axe [/]); same 
as ope [*J. 

uloko [/J the Iroko tree, Chloro- 
phora excelsa ; gives good timber ; 
it is said to produce the tsetse- 
fly; uloko n-Enyas [...~\] the 
Iroko tree of Enyae, a meeting- 
place for witches, but other Iroko 
trees have the same repute; cf. 
Yor. iroko [,J,]' t v. isi [/]. 

ubka T 1 corn-cake: maize is 

L • • • J 

fried in a pan, then pounded or 
ground, and finally baked; cf. 
b [*], oka ['J. 
ubi3a [/J (i) stopping of passers- 
by near a place where secret 
ceremonies are performed, as 
done e.g. by a rope and " bull- 
roaring " (Dvia [/] -society), 
* ' bull-roaring 1 ' alone (Oxwahs 
[_/ ]), or by people armed with 
whips (at some ugie [..]). 
(2) secret performance (at Dvia 

and ugie); cf Is [J], ova. [."%]; 
v. emila ['.'], usa [*.], unwe^ 

rhiota ['.%.]. 

Uma 1 [ #- ] name of a Bini village, 
seat of an Oxwahe [./.] shrine. 

uma a [..] (1) private council or 
discussion held before reaching 
a decision as e.g. that of the 
court chiefs, or a council of war. 
(2) um-afaoe [/*.] "council of 
animals" : fable, story; um-afaoe 

de wu [.'*.Y] " tne stor Y nas 
fallen and died" (formula denot- 
ing the end of a story) ; um-af ao- 
okpa siEsissie [ / ' f . . . ] " a story 
is threading along" (formula 
beginning a story). (3) um- 
snwas a wise, intelligent 

man; v.szi ['], oxa [/], ita ["]. 

umaza [*..] a tree, Standtia 

Umaza [ ~\ J name of a Bini village 
on the Siluko Road. 

ume [/] the camwood tree, 
Pterocarpus osun; & red dye is 
obtained from it which is used 
for dyeing mats, and by women 
to paint their faces (as a sign of 
the gods Oxwahs [ J ] and 
Aks [/]). 

umelu [./] Fulani cattle; cf Yor. 

malu [.%]. 

Umodu ["J name of a sib; the 
senior is chief Etiyo [ '] at 
Benin City ; the sib comes from 
Uhs [ . . ] ; its morning salutation 
is la w umodu ["'.]', v. sgbse [ t \\ . 

Umogu [ ' / ] royal family of Benin ; 
its head is the Dba; descended 
from He Ifs [•'•.]; v. sgbse [^]. 

Umosu [*/] a sib; the chief £ro 
[/] belongs to it; v. sgbse [ # \J. 

umozo [_ J sword. 

umobie [\J a woman who bears 
many children ; a fertile woman ; 
cf. bis ['], omo [/]; v. aga [..]. 


umobo [ # , J (i) step-son, -daughter, 
(2) foster son; umob-erha [."'] 
(1) stepfather, (2) f osterf ather ; 
v. erha ["]. 

umodia [\ J (1) a straight line, or 
road; ya-e y-umodia ['.'..] make 
it straight! umodia na ta gbe 
['.J.'] this straight road is very- 
long. (2) also used for "mile"; 

cf. dia [']; v. ibipki ["'J. 
umamo [/J native iron hammer, 
umovo [""] catapult, used by 

boys to kill birds. 

umoxa [/\.3 a * ree > Pycnanthus 
kombo (F.D. list has umoghan) ; 
cf. ume [/] (?). 

umuadiye [ ##> J " chicken-killer ' ' , 
a carnivorous animal (N.W.Th. 
has "serval"); usually called 
"fox"; c/.mu 1 f], adiys [*/]; 
v. umuoxoxo [ ]. 

L • • • • -I 

umueys [ , _ ] clock ; a new word ; 
not considered by A. as the cor- 
rect term (v. utsys [...], uyede 
[...]) > it would literally mean 
"a punctual instrument"; cf. 
mu 1 [']; v. Egogo ["']. 

umuoxoxo [ ] same as umuadiys 
[ ] "serval". 

unis 1 ["] (1) a tree, Xylopia 
aethiopica. (2) fruit of the 
above; it is an ingredient in a 
pepper-soup also called unie 
which is drunk by women after 
delivery, and also by sick people ; 
the soup is not cooked with oil ; 
v. ayako [..']. 

unis 2 ["] family; v. Egbee [ # \|. 

uni-£r£ ['',] (the -£f£ is not nasal- 
ised) in four days' time ; cf sre 
[\];v. £d£ [/]. 

unomuno [,...] "thing that al- 
ways asks": a name for the o- 
gwEga [ ] -divination; occurs 
in one of the ogwsga words ; cf. 
no [/]. 

unu [/] mouth; unu w iya 
gate in Dzuola's big wall and 

unuyisE [/• J "mouth cannot 
reach": an old expression equi- 
valent to oloi ["] "wife of the 

UnwagwE [ \ J the senior chief at 
the Iwebo [.^v J -society; he is in 
charge of the Dba's dresses, and 
especially his coral-beads. He 
used to act for three years as 
the Dba when an Dba had died, 
during which three years the 
Dba's death was kept a secret 
(this practice was not followed 
the last time) ; thus he was (and 
still is in theory) the only man 
to wear the Dba's dresses; the 
title is hereditary, or, at least, 
it remains in the family (Igi- 
esa [.".]): if the son of an 
UnwagwE is too young, a near 
relative takes the title. 
unwaCE [,"\] brightness (of day 
or weather); unwau-gde n-£r£ 
l-uya£ gbe [/\V/] lit. "the 
brightness of to-day is very 
different": to-day it is much 
brighter than usual (ove [ ] 
might be substituted above for 
unwatifi); cf nwa 2 [J]. 
Unw£ ["] a god of the Dba's; 

v. Dsa [\], Osua ['J. 
unwErhig [ ] whip; idiom.: Ese 
rhi-unw£rhi£ [."W] "kindness 
has taken a whip" : things have 
taken a bad turn, or, something 
well intended has had a bad end 
(e.g. an advice not taken) ; ueye 

o-£se rhi-unw£rhi£ [ /.'.']" see 

again how kindness has come 
out wrong ' ' . unw£rhi-5ta ['.'..] 
"squirrel's whip": a shrub, 
Glyphaea later if olia; F.D. list: 
unw£rhi-ot-Egbo [ . * * ] (£gbo 

['*] "bush") same as asue ["] 
(A.)(?); a shrub, Grewia coria- 
ceae. The unwerhi-5ta is kept in 
all ins and ebo shrines (except the 
ancestral shrines, Erha [ " ] and 
Iye[ "])as the juju's whip. When 
the oracle has found out that a 
man is a witch, or has sworn sbo 
to kill somebody, the priest of 
the shrine whips him three times 
with the unwerhi-ota in telling 
him so, and the man will 
confess. (Women keep it at the 
Oloku ["*] shrine.) The urho 
n-isg [,,"%.] use unwerhi-5ta on 
many occasions to whip on- 
lookers away, e.g. when fetching 
palm-wine for the royal house- 
hold, as nobody must see the 
contents of their loads, or when 
fetching water for the Oba (he 
never drinks water from Ogba). 
It is (was) also used by the 
Dvia [/] and Ekpo [ # J societies. 

unwonwe [V.] a small tree, 
Alchornea cordifolia; its leaves 
are used by the Yoruba people 
as a mild purgative for chil- 

unwoite [ #- J soup; its main in- 
gredients are: ize n-ofua [_'*] 
(crayfish); shig [/] (native 
pepper); eo-arie [ '] ("native 
butter"); ui3e (salt), and 

ofigbo [" J (palm-oil). There is 
also ocro soup: unwoMxiaoo 
[/*..] and afo [/] soup: unwou- 
afo [.'.'], the latter prepared 
e.g. with ofiwo ["J ("bitter 
leaves") or eb-itete [/ J (spin- 
ach) or eb-ododo [.'"], ikp-ogi 

[."%.], etc. 

unyegbe [_ J tray; unyegb-emue 

[/.,] ash-tray, 
unyeye z [*/] a tree, Monodora 


unyeye 2 ['/] a kind of rat, 
brown, with two white stripes 
on its back, running from head 
to tail. 

unyioe [ . "\ . ] custom ; manners ; u- 
nyiO-soo na make io[ t ' m J J' J J*.] 

"the custom of this country 
does not suit (finish)": is not 
perfect, wants improving; u- 
nyio-ofe ke gbe [.'J J'} "his 
manners are very suitable": he 
has good manners; eoo^unyiCs 
[J. A.] ne nas no manners; cf. 

unyuuu [_] dry season; cf. 
nyuou [/]. 

uraue [/V] joining in a song; 
urao-ihua [.**•] " t aking-up 
song": chorus. 

urebo [_ J a tribal mark on the 
forehead worn by women, mostly 
found at Oke [ _ ] and Urho n- 
igbe[.."\.];c/. ur-syele ['•..](?). 

ur-syele [**..] a beauty-mark for 
women consisting of dots on the 
breast, produced by a knife; 
originally a Jekri custom; lit. 
"able to hold (n> [J]) a full- 
grown man (syele [' ]); cf. 
urebo [...](?). 

UT1 [..] residue of water ;n the 
mould where palm kernels have 
been "mashed"; left when the 
palm-oil which is floating above 
has been taken off. 

uria [\] a seed similar to that of 
ixitii [**.]; it lathers well and is, 
therefore, used as an ingredient 
in native soap (eu-axus [ t J J]); 
it is also used alone as soap (by 
poor people, called eo-axu-ooi w 
ogue [._/•••• J "poor man's 
soap "), but no longer nowadays, 
when mostly em-uxus [/•] and 
ude ["] are used. 

uria [\] far away; cf. re [J]. 



uriyo i ['/] a smooth-skinned 
lizard, also called alimioyo ['/']. 

uriy5 2 ['/] a tree, Cordia 
auraniiaca; its fruit contains 

Uriyo [/.] name of a Bini village, 
seat of an Oxwahe [ t J J shrine. 

uro [..] (*) a round wooden 
tray on which pepper is ground, 
v. oui w ufut3u [."'.]. (2) hole on 
ise [*J board (used for keeping 
the gained ise in the game of 
ise, same as ogi-uro [.'..]); ur- 
ise [/J ise board; v. ogie [ J. 

Urhemehe [/'J name of a Bini 

urho [..] gate; urh-eyeye [.*y.] 
private passage leading from the 
apartment containing the Osu 
[/] shrine to the outside; 
occasionally also passage from 
od-uw-owa [/*•] (private rooms 
of husband) to od-erie [/•] 
(women's appartment) ; urh-owa 
[.'*] lane between market stalls; 
urho n-isg [ # % ]"the five gates' ' : 
young servants at the Sguae; 
they accompany the iloi [*'], 
and carry water, etc., for the 
6guae as well; furthermore, 
they collect material wanted by 
the ewaise [...]. 
Urhokpota [/••] the entrance to 
efioi [.'.] in Bini folklore; said 
to have been closed by one Dba ; 
c/.urho [..], okpe[/], ota [/]. 
Urho n-igbe [./Y] "the ten 
gates": name of a populous 
Bini town in the south-east of 
the Benin Division ; often called 
urhu [.J (1) neck ; idiom. : DoaC-eCe 
y-oo-urhu (6ai3a [/]) [,,J,\] 
"he is forming words on my 
neck": he is adding something 
wrong to my words that belies 


them, e.g. in court; he contra- 
dicts my (true) testimony ; urhu 
i5e gu-ona (gwa 3 □)[./" J " my 
neck does not fit this" : I cannot 
bear this (e.g. a fine that is 
to be payed). urhu w abo [/'•] 
"neck of arm (or, hand)": 
wrist; urhu w awe [/_] "neck of 
foot": ankle (i.e. not only the 
bone); v. eho [/]. (2) voice; v. 
eho [/]. 

urhuato [ # / ] " blinder " : a cactus^ 

same as Dp ['J], 
urhukpa [_J lantern; cf. rhu 1 
[*], ukpa ["] ; Yor. atukpa [ # p J. 
uteoe burial; cf. p [J], 

uti [.'] two hundred, 
up ["] line; ya w e y-up [*/ '] .put 
it (arrange it) in a line ! t§ y-up 
[ "] fall in line! rUw £ re uruup 

[. . ] ^° ^ as it should be 
done! ("line by line"), uf-ode 
["*] pathway of road; uf-eha 
["*] a style of hair-dressing 
worn by women during the 
eighth month of pregnancy; it 
consists of three rows of hair, 
one in the middle of the head 
and one at each side; v. uvie [**]. 
uroY [. . .] a crowd of people. 
Upho [ t .J (1) a Bini village on 
the Sapele road; its inhabitants 
are said to be very shy and 
retiring. (2) shy; idiom.: Upho 
n-egu w ob-o()a [...'. . ] "a shy 
man who does not make the 
acquaintance of anybody". 
Upp ['."] name of a Bini village, 
seat of an Dxwahe [,J J shrine, 
upt-ame (1) small gutter 

leading off (under the floor) the 
rain-water gathered in ukpafe* 
[.'.]. (2) a direction, something 
like west: when clouds appear 
there, rain is certain to fall; cf. 
ame [..]. 

209 i 4 

uoi [..] ( x ) a big clay demijohn 
(such as are used e.g. in stores) ; 
y-u^u ni yak-ogo re [,J'J'.'] 
"take that demijohn, go (and) 
buy (ka [']) palm-wine (and) 
come!": fetch some palm -wine 
in that demijohn ! (2) a pot dug 
into the earth at every juju 
shrine, containing water mixed 
with chalk and charms; this 
mixture is said to drive evil 
spirits away ; the priest splashes 
it (instead of chalk, v. orhue 
[ _]) over supplicants, e.g. sick 
people, men wanting an ordeal, 
or pregnant women. 

upia [_] the Borassus palm, 
Borassus flabellifera; a rattle is 
made from its leaves (v. Egwe 


u^ubu [ J (1) hook; barb; ifeo- 
utubu ["".] barbed arrow. 
(2) a trap made of pointed iron 

ufubu ['/] a smooth-skinned 
lizard, bigger than alimi5)p 
[' "]; it is said to be able to 
kill snakes. 

utuhe [ /] a tree, Pierocarpus 
mildbraedii ; an example of it is 
to be found near ski w oba [.**'], 
the central market of Benin 
City, where it is given sacrifices 
under the name of emota [ .^v . ] . 
(It stands now in front of the 
C.M.S. bookshop, opposite the 
entrance of the market.) 

utuoa [' '] boil; cf. Jekri urube 
['/] or [...]. 

ufa [•'] a trap for climbing 
animals : across a long path cut 
through the forest, sticks or 
ropes are fixed by means of 
which climbing animals, e.g. 
monkeys, try to cross to the 
other side of the forest; in the 

middle of the stick or rope, they 
enter the trap fastened to it, 
touch a trigger (yexueue [* # J) 
and are strangled. The trap can 
be entered from both ends. ' 
Existing clearings in the forest 
with creepers hanging across 
are used in the same way, and, 
then, the "lane" can be dis- 
pensed with. 
usa[' J secret performances form- 
ing part of the worship of the 
ihl Oxwahe [./.], during which 
passers-by are stopped by " bull- 
roaring" or messengers; v. uboa 


Usama [ # / ] hut built at the 

Obto [**'] quarter for the Dbas 

usana [/*] matches; cf. Yor. 

ijana [./ *]. 
Usapek [."'] name of a trading 

centre in Warri Province, Sapele ; 

some old people call it Usakpele. 
use [/] mutual help between 

neighbours in bigger tasks of 

farm work, in mud treading, 


Use [. J a Bini village situated on 
the road leading to Siluko 
(Is-iloko [/•.]). 

Us§["] a village near the Yoruba 

use [/] poverty, want; use s-oe 

L\] (se 1 [']) "poverty is 
reaching him": he is in a state 

of want; us-omo yis-o 

"may want of child not reach 

you": may you never lack 

children; thanksgiving after a 

meal used by women towards a 

senior woman or man. 

use [/] a period of five days, i.e. 

a native week with both rest 

days (sd-ekg [/*]) included. 

us-§ki [."%.] native market held 



every five days; us-eki n-ogbera 
[ A / V] the market of five days 
ago; us-gki n-Dde [/\..^] the 
market coming within five days, 
v. ugie [..]. usi_£rs[/] (r not 
nasalised) in five days' time 
(including to-day); v. sde [/]. 
us-usg [,V3 every five days, or, 
native week; us-us-ayadu w Eki w 
enyae [//./..] (do [']) every five 
days the market of Enyae is 
held; cf iss [/]. 

usi [/] starch obtained from 
cassava; v. ebobazi [_/], 

usi [/] for a long time; os-eoa 
ne w (u)si [.V] (se [']) he has 
been (lit. "reached") here a 
long time. 

usie [/] black coloured border on 
lower part of walls in Bini 
houses produced by "rubbing" 
them with ogbigbo [ '], about 
3 feet high ; cf. sie [J]. 

usoue [.Y] noise » of water and 
crowds ; cf so [']. 

usu [/] (i) line, row, of people; 
usii n-Dxia ni ef-en-okpia ye 
L.V/\1 "(among) the line 
(of workers) that is moving on 
over there (it is, that) the man 
is"; (2) among, v. otu [ ]. 

usugba ['"]; usugb-ema ["^J 
round lump of fufu. 

utalawe [ / J trousers ; cf. owe [ ] . 

utata [Y] a tree, Lecaniodiscus 
cupanioides ; used as firewood 

utete ['.J hillock, only a few feet 
high; a praise-name of the Dba 
is; noh! w utete n-oy-uye s-ooa 

(se vi) v:. ..;;.} -he who 

climbs the hill that looks at the 
dance (show) more than any- 
body else/' 
uteys [...] "time- teller": clock; 
a new, and perhaps the best 

word besides egogo [*"]; cf. 
to VI e Y e [..]; v. umuEye [...], 

Uti [ J a praise-name of the 

Ezomo: Ezomo n-Uti [" ' ]; 1/. 

Onya [/]. 
utieoe [ # \] act of calling; call; 

tie [/], itie [/]. 
uto ["*] iron arrow-head; uto-pe 

["J oval iron arrow-head; v. 

ope ['.]. 

ut5yoto ' ' dug-in-ground " : 

(r) main pole in eru [/] (rack 
where yams are kept) . (2) a big 
clay pot sunk into the ground 
so that its mouth is at a level 
with it, in order to keep water 
cool; cooler; cf. to 2 [ ], yi 1 [*], 


utu [ '] mushroom. 

utu ['J a sacred symbol erected 
on farms, corresponding to the 
inyato [ -t J in villages, i.e. it is 
the ground that is thus wor- 
shipped; it has no shrine, but is 
only an ixitii [*'J tree; part of 
every meal is given to it ; with- 
out utu being planted nobody 
may have intercourse with his 
wife on the farm. 

utukpuuu [ _ J stump of a felled 
tree; v. uyuyuou [....], Ezi [.J, 
isi LI 

utui>£ shouting; cf. tu [']. 

uvaf aoe [ ] spine with adhering 
ribs; backbone; cf. va ['}, araOe 
[.*.] (because butchering starts 
at the backbone). 

uve [ ] bone; cf. ahuve [ ]; v. 
ugbodoko [...J. 

uviamE [..J a tree, Tetrorchidium 

uvig ["] (1) line, row, rank, tile; 
if a xia o-uvis ['..'] they an 
walking in single file; ya^e y- 
uvi£ [ \"} put it in a row; ur 

iyeke [*\..] hollow line along 
the back; (3ai3a w g y-uvi-uvig 
[ / \ ] arrange it line by line, 
systematically (probably also : 
group by group). (2) in divining, 
group of combinations belong- 
ing together; v. ogwEga [.*%.]. 

uviei3£ [,"\] weeping; uvieu-okpa 
[*\ .] the cock's crow. 

uvu [/] small hole, also of an 
animal; uvu w eho [/'•] ear-hole; 
uvu Ihue [ *"] nostril; v. uye 


uvua [ J a small clay pot used 
for fetching water or preparing 
"medicine"; idiom.: k-iri k- 
uvua de w uhae [/'.".] "rope as 
well as water pot have fallen 
into the well": a woman who 
was with child has died. 

uoeCe [."%,] scarcity; dearth; 
uueu-Igari [.'*.'] scarcity of gari ; 
cf. oe 2 [J]. 

uoi [/] (1) girl, in ooox-iioi [ '/] 
(besides ouox-oxuo [ j) also in 
uw n-esa [ t /J "the girl of 
Ishan": a timber-tree, Entan- 
drophragma cylindrium ; very 
tall, straight and smooth ; other- 
wise the word is rarely used in 
that sense, and when standing 
alone it mostly means (2) 
daughter of the royal house of 
Benin and the Ezomo's [""] 
family ; v. okoro [ ] . 

uve [ . "\] salt ; uvt mu w e gbe [ / * • . ] 
" salt has caught it (too) much" : 
it is salty (food) . 

uoomios (hi quick speech 

also uoouoe [ >.]) (1) equal (in 
height e.g.); ifa ya y-uooui>£ 
[".">.] they are equal (in height, 
said of people, trees, etc.). (2) 
also used in the meaning of Erse 

uwa 1 [..] pronoun (disjunctive) 

of the 2nd pers. pi.: you; cf. 
wa [.]. 

uwa 2 [ J riches; pleasure (old 

uwawa [ _ J a clay pot for cooking 
soup; uwaw-ugwe [ / / ] soup pot 
with cover ; uwaw-ezsxErhe 
[/."*'] a kind of flat pot, used 
by the Jekri people for cooking 
pepper soup; uwaw-axus [//] 
wash basin. 

uwaya ["J telegraph; cf. Engl, 

uwe [.J pronoun (disjunctive) of 
the 2nd pers. sgl. : you ; cf. u- [ J. 

uwite [,"Y] being lost; cf wi [J]. 

uwdwe ['J J a tree, Albizzia, oc- 
curring in the following species : 
uwowe n-ugu [ ' J y~\A Ibizzia fer- 

ruginea ; uwowe n-aba f u [ V . ' . ] 
Albizzia sassa, cf ba [J], fu£§ 
[J ("that glows faintly"); 
uwowe n-olay-abo [V. ...] Al- 
bizzia sassa, cf. laya [/], "to 
spread'' abo [.'] ("waving, or, 
spreading, branches ") ; uwowe 
n-ol-ema te [V...] Albizzia 
zygia ("that cooks fufu and 
eats"). All of them are used as 
firewood only. 

uwu [ ' ] inside ; o-uw-owa [ ' * * ] 
in the house; v. odt [/]. 

uwu [/] death; cf wu ['], Ogi- 

uwu [."*]. 
uwu [ J boundary between two 
villages, or between the farm- 
land of different families culti- 
vating the same plot, 
uwusa [ # # J a timber tree. 
uxaoE [.%.] act of telling, de- 
ciding; decision; uxau-eoE na 
ke gbe [''J.J'] the decision of 
this matter is very wise ("suit- 
able"); c/.xa [J]. 

L~Y] (process of) tiring; 
uxat>£ n-EOE na xa 6e kpob gbe 


[ ^ 9 JJ \ ' ' ■ ] " the tiring which 
this palaver tires me, is very 
great": this matter makes me 
very tired; cf. xa 2 [J]. 

uxaxa[V.] sl tree, F agar a macro- 
phylla and xanthoxyloides ; the 
juice from its stem is put on 
loose teeth to fix them. 

Uxegie [/ ] a village famous for 
the skill of its inhabitants in 
setting fractured bones; v. ko 1 

uxexu [. . .] door-hinge ; cf. xs [/], 
exu [..]; v. ukelu [".]. 

uxioxio [ _ . ] a big, blue-black bird 
with grey feathers on its head 
and a long tail; its cry is be- 
lieved to spell evil. 

uxi35e [/J half; fi-uxiooe me 
o-inya ni [,/. . ' /] " cut me half 
of that yam". 

uxo [ . . ] navel. 

uxorho" [...] a squirrel (bigger 
than ota [..]); it lives in a 
hollow tree and comes out once 
only in the morning to look for 

uxu ["] a tree, Alstonia con- 
gensis; its bitter bark is pre- 
pared with cold water as a 
medicine against a certain fever. 

uxu [.'] gag put into a man's 
mouth and stretched so as to 
prevent him from crying; ap- 
plied to victims of human 
sacrifices in the old times. 

uxu [..] inheritance, heritage; v. 
re 1 [']. 

uxu [/%] seed (the sprouting tip) . 

uxuS '[.'] remains of palm fruit 
after the kernels have been 
removed; they are burnt and 
the ashes (em-uxue [/•]) used 
in the preparation of native 
soap (euaxus [ v. erhe 1 

uxusue same as axue [/]: 

bathing, having a bath; cf. 

XUE [J], 

uxurhe [ ## J a carved stick, a few 
feet long, forming part of the 
ancestral shrines (Erha [ " ] and 
lye [**]) and the shrines of the 
ihs [.M (e.g. DxwahE [./J, Dvia 
[/] and others). During prayers 
they are knocked on the ground 
in order to confirm the words. 
uxurh-Dho [//] a kind of tree; 
its branches form the most 
essential part of an ancestral 
shrine (and of others, v. below), 
because these branches are be- 
lieved to ensure communication 
with the spirits of the dead 
("to speak to them and to hear 
them"). The branches of uxurh- 
Dho have joints and fall off when 
old; its leaves resemble those 
of the gum tree; uxurh-oho (i.e. 
the branch) is found on the 
shrines of the ih§ who were once 
human beings, i.e. not on that 
of Oloku [ * ' • ] (and some others) . 
It is likewise found under some 
inyato [...], i.e. the trees where 
otoe [. .], the ground, is worship- 

uxuuxu [ ' " ] various. 

uxuSu [\ J (the) top side; above; 
cf ode [/], ava [/]. 

v.xuCu [/,] time when the yam- 
creepers are still growing up 
along the poles and when there 
is no food left (in every year 
about March) ; then the women 
go to the abandoned farms (ogo 
[ J) in search of is-dgo [.*%,]; 
famine-; uxuuu fi [/.*] famine is 

uxuou [ # , J (1) medicine for heal- 
ing. (2) charm eaten or used for 
washing, with the object of en- 


suring success or protection, but 
never harmful, like ebo [."%], not 
even when used for protective 
purposes; uxuou n-aya xu-awa 

n-aya xu w oha [ .... .. ] "me- 
dicine for bathing the dog one 
takes to hunt in the bush"; v. 
edae [ J], exwae [' ], awase 

uxuxue [ J different; uxuxu-eui 
n-Dvio re hia bfc [ ' \ t 1 '/ ' • v ] " the 
different (sorts of) things he has 
brought are many": he has 
brought many different things. 

uxwaxwaue [ . "Y ] being crowded ; 
jostling each other; cf. xwaxwa 


uxwerhe [. ] a round stool (cut 
from a block of wood, without 
legs; carried by means of holes 
in the sides) ; uxwerhe namayo se 

[. ' V ""%] this stool is not high 
enough (lit. " reaches"), 
uxwerhe [\ J sugar-cane; v. oyocT 

uxwerhsfe [,""\.] beingmild; mild- 
ness; cf xwerhe [/]. 

uye big hole, or pit, natural 
or dug by men ; idiom. : uye de 
gbe n-ot5_g [.//Y] "the hole 
fell against him who dug it": 
machinations, or, intrigues, have 
turned against the one who 
perpetrated them, uy-egwi [/'] 
"tortoise-hole" (perhaps "in- 
terior of tortoise-shell"): deep 
round cavity in the bottom of a 
pond (e.g. at ok-uwu [/ *]) made 
to enable it to hold more water. 

uyeoe [,"\.] act of remembering; 
memory ; uyet5-et)-atu w £se w iwi 
[/••• the memory of a 

good deed ("of what is done 
well") is not lost; cf ye i [J]. 
u yi [\] honour; dignity (the 
honour bestowed upon a man 

as well as his inherent dignity) ; 
awe; cf. Yor. iyi [• J. 
uyitte [ /\] act of creating; 
creation; c/. yi 2 [*]. 

Uzama[ /J the Oba's council, con- 
sisting of the following chiefs: 
Ezomo ["'], Edohg [ '], Oliha 
[•*.], 0bt5[ *•'], 6to[;],Eh3b 
N-efe " ]» an d * ne EdaikS 


uzexae [._] a sandy place; cf 
exae [*J. 

Uzebu [ /] (1) chief Ezomo's ["'] 
quarter at Benin City. (2) a 
dance, v. igbuzsbu [....]; cf. 
Yor. Ij&bu. 

uzefe [,\.] being proud; pride; 
uzeCe fug bu gbe [J ,J'*] your 
pride is very great ; cf ze 2 [ ' ] ; 
v. hio[J]. 

uzola [*/], also izDla (seven-day) 
week; uzola n-oxwa ['..'.] "big 
week": Sunday; uzola n-exerhe 
['/•] "small week " : Saturday. 
Of Yoruba origin? 

uzuaoe [ % ] begging for food ; cf 
zua [>]/' 

va 1 [ ] CO to break into pieces 
(that are already designed by 
nature, and therefore break 
away without difficulty, such as 
the parts of a kola-nut). (2) to 

va 2 [■] to branch off (e.g. a yam- 
rope, or a branch); inya na va 
y-obo na (ye [J] "towards") 
[ /// J this yam (-rope) branches 
to this side, va ['] mu ['] to 
embrace (mainly of prostitutes; 
but cf avamu [ ] ; v. dede 

va 3 ["] to ail; in uhumi va ve 
[/./] I am ill (not of headache 
only); cf. va 1 ["](?); v. uhuj 
Sova [/*.]. 


va ['] to cry (at a high pitch; 

used of elephants and toucans) ; 

described by xwaxwa ["VVJ. 
va [J] to split into two equal 

parts (v. so [J] "to split into 

many parts", e.g. wood, with 


[J] to stop at a certain place 
in order to rest (when on travel) ; 
"to branch"; t-iva eua 
I will rest there ; cf. ovauie [ u m J] . 

vayavaya [ /'] occurs in a song 
only, describes a staggering kind 
of motion broken by intervals of 
clinging to a tree; used of the 
bat avamu [."%.], and also, meta- 
phorically, of prostitutes; with 
the verb pi [']; cf. va 2 ['], and 
the next item. 

vavavaya [ # # . . ] describes the flight 
of herons, hornbills, and of the 
bats owd [..] and avamu [.%.], 
i.e. that of fairly big, but not 
powerful animals, whilst vuya- 

vuyavuya [ ] describes the 

powerful flight of a big bird; 
otl vavavava [.'....] it flies 
clumsily ; cf. the preceding item . 

ve ["] to offer a price for some- 
thing and to argue about it, 
"to prize " ; il-iyo w uv-ee [ " " \ ] 

how much do you give for if? 
v-ee me ye [\ J] "ask for it 
for me (to see) " ; used e.g. when 
the trader is absent or speaks a 
foreign language, vey-urhu [/.] 
lit. "to promise (?) on (one's) 
neck", i.e. responsibility: to 
promise to pay ; to vote (a sacri- 
fice or cowries) to an ihl or ebo. 

ve [ * ] (1) to open (of a sore only) . 
(2) to come out (of a secret) ; et5s 
na vse [.,/."%] the secret (word) 
has come out; cf. ve [J] . 

ve i [ " ] to wrestle ; oko na m-obo 
gua vg [.'..V'] this fellow 

knows well how to wrestle; cf. 

v£ 2 ['] to swear an oath; v-gba 
[\], v-ihg [^j to swear by a 
god; "to swear juju"; v-d2 [\] 
swear it (i.e. that you have not 
done it, by cursing yourself with 
a juju). 

vc 3 [ * ] to catch (of fire) ; erhs vg 
[ "] the fire is catching; cf. 

vz [J] to reveal (a secret) ; ov-eOe 
ni [ %9 J J] he is revealing that 
word (secret); ov-ofe [ m J'] he 
revealed it ; cf. ve [ * ] . 

vg [J] to light a pipe; to see that 
a fire catches ; ivg-rhe na ,~] 
I am lighting this fire (by 
blowing on it); cf. ve [']; v. 

hie 1 [J]. 

veee ['] (1) extremely deep (of a 
hole the bottom of which cannot 
be seen, such as e.g. fissures 
caused by an earthquake, but 
also of a river. Used with the 
verb ye [ * ] . (2) very far away ; 
iy-ere veee u-umodia [,J.'\.] 
I see him very far away straight 
ahead (lit. "in a straight line", 
i.e. on a straight road). 

vewae ['\] to wax (of the moon) ; 
v. ko^uro [/J, uki [_]. 

vl 1 to jump; vl [*] ra [ /] to 
jump across. 

vl 2 [ ' ] (1) to cut (a swelling) open ; 

dovl ue atiyeya na [J J t ] 

come and cut me this abscess ! 
(2) to make a mark (on paper, 
sand, a wall, etc.) ; vi^uvie y-e6a 
["'/%] draw a line here ! vl owe 
y-ada n-ulao ["...'V] "make 

a mark with (your) foot at the 
junction which you take (lit. 
enter) " (said to somebody going 
in front that he may mark the 
way for the people who follow) . 

(3) to make a tribal mark (the 
place must be indicated) ; ovi C- 
irho [ / 4 ] he marked my cheeks. 
viS [J] to grumble (e.g. about the 
lack of something) ; yevia ma (58 

"don't grumble show 
me": don't grumble to me! cf. 
ovia [.J. 
vi-ab-ema [..^.]; c/. via [/]. 
vie['] (i)toweep(c/. eve [."]). (2) to 
discharge blood or water (of a 
wound or sore) ; ete n-or-ot-owe 
vie yiyi(yi) [...'•/...] "the sore 
on his leg is discharging (water) 
continuously (3) to crow (of a 
cock) ; okpa vie [ ' ] the cock is 
crowing ; cf. uvieoe [ ,"\ . ] . 
vig [ "] to be ripe (of palm fruit) ; 
edl na mane vie [.V"~M these 
palm fruits are not yet ripe, 
vilvievie [•••] or viey [•] very 
small (of infants and things ; the 
very smallest size, smaller than 
rwerwerwe [•••]); oye vie? [/•] 
it is very small, tiny. 
v-ih2[^];c/. ve2[*]. 
vio [J] to take (with a plural 
object; v. mu ['], rhie [J]); 
vio [J] kua ['] to throw away; 
vio [J] de [J] (re [*]) to bring; 
vi-eoi ni re [ m # } V ] Drin g these 
things! vio [J] loois [J] to 
lay down; ehoho v-ifuuu na 
looie [.-\JJ.J] the wind 
lays this grass down (i.e. flattens 
it) (but also ifutm na vio louie 
lel-oto [.J J.,.\] "this grass 
lies down along the ground !") 
vi-ab-ema [.."\J to take the 
drooping branches and creepers 
of yam and tie (or wind) them 
up the poles and ropes (clipping 
them as well); iri-ugbo w iyavi- 
ab-ema [ . V. .~\ . ] I am going 
to the farm to (go and) tie the 
creepers up. 

vo ['] to become, be full; ovoe 
LM it is full; ovo [/] it is 
getting full, vo ['] na ['] to be 
full of (v. Yor. ku ['] fu [']); 
uko na vo n-ame [".*'.] this 
calabash is full of water (also 
ame v-uko na [ " ] ; cf. vo [J]). 

vo U] to fill; ovo-fg he filled 
it; cf. vo [']. 

vu ['] (1) to pull (not dig) out 
(e.g. fruit in the ground, cas- 
sava; wie [J] is used of yams); 
dolele 6e yavu w igati [J ..' J".'] 
come and accompany (follow) 
me to (go and) pull out cassava ! 
(2) to root out (tree-stumps). (3) 
to force one's partner in wrest- 
ling out of his posture. 

vu [ " L.* [ ' ] to f a11 b y accident (of 
men and animals only) ; ovu_a 

t)-uhuC-erha [ ' "1 he fell down 
from the top of the tree (vu_a 
r\J] in a pause); general term 
v. de 1 [']. 

vuyavuyavuya [ ] describes 

the flight of big birds like 
vultures, ducks, hawks, eagles, 
toucans, etc. ; oti vuvavuyavuya 
[.' ] it flies heavily; cf. vaya- 


vuuu 1 [•] very deep (of a well 
without water the bottom of 
which is almost invisible, or of 
a very deep river) ; oye vuuu 
[.'•] it is very deep; v. veee* [•] 
(deeper still). 

vuuu 2 [•] describes the noise of 
a flying beetle (or other insect) ; 
ogwi xia vuuu [/'*] lit. "it is 
making a noise (going) along". 

(e)u- 1 (1) a preposition indicating 
rest in a locality or motion from 
a locality; its meaning is often 
shown more precisely by a 
following noun of locality, as 


e.g. in o-uwu ["] "in inside": 
in o-uhuou [/J "at head": on 
top of; o-otD [\] "in ground": 
underneath. In this way, the 
English prepositions are ex- 
pressed by means of one Bini 
preposition only, linked with 
various local nouns. v-obo [/] 
lit. "in hand", means "from" 
when a human being is qualified 
by it. o- is also employed to 
form a great number of ad- 
verbial expressions, as e.g. o-eoa 
[,\] there; u-odo there (a 
locality still further away than 
that indicated by o-eoa) ; o-eoa 
here; o-ore ["] outside; 
on the street (used when the 
speaker is at home and means 
another place in the town). 
The "prepositions" formed by 
means of linking u- to a noun 
of place can also be used ad- 
verbially, e.g. o-od-aro [."%,] m 
front (generalised by adding ode 
"road"), in front of; o-iyeke 
[\J at the back; behind; 
v-od-uxuou [/..] above. Other 
adverbs formed with the help of 
o- are o-ehia ['•] "in all": 
altogether, e.g. ix-ikp5 ugie u- 
ehia (xi§ [ ]) [/"/•] "I sold 
twenty pounds in all": I sold 
goods amounting to the value 
of twenty pounds, o-erio ['J] 
or l\J]> an d o-enia ['J] or 
["V] "thus"; o-exoxor] "in 
the corner": privately. 
(e)o- 2 as ; like (used with nouns) ; 
oba o-eb-axue [.^/*>.] it is red 
like a parrot tail-feather, o-ene 
['*] "as if" (introducing sen- 
tences) ; oye o-enomaoie [.'*•• J] 
he looks (lit. "is") as if he has 
not slept. To o-ene [*•] may be 
added awe "one says": oru 

o-en-aw-ori w ase [ / * • v " ' ] he be- 
haves (lit. "does") as if he were 

(e)o- 3 (i) what (interrogative); 
o-u-aue [J J] what did you 
get? o-u-amie [" •] what did you 
see? (2) what (relative); con- 
structions with o- in this sense 
are in some cases used to denote 
objects which in other languages 
would be expressed by nouns, 
e.g. eo-are [..'] "what one 
eats ' ' : food ; eo-axue (short for 
eo-ayaxue) [,JJ] "what one 
takes to have a bath " : soap ; to 
this class belongs probably also : 
eo-arie[./] (*/. (native) 
butter. (3) why (with following 
gu ['] or ze [']); oogu ru w ee 
[> "] why did he do it? ("what 
did he do it with, or, for") ; o-dze 

n-ona' rii^ee [V*'v] (" what 
caused him to do it"). (4) how 
(interrogative) ;ht[J] is put at 
the end of the sentence: o-uwa 
oie he [.J/ J] how have you 
(pi.) slept? (5) where (but cf. uo 1 
[J]); o-u-arie \Jj\ where are 
you going? o-u-aye [../'] where 
do you live? (6) particle intro- 
ducing temporal relative sen- 
tences (v. n- 1), e.g. ugbe (or eye 
[..]) °-Me [..J] (at the time) 
when I was coming, 
oa [/] (1) to meet; to pass on the 
road; ioa-re [,Y] I met him; 
idiom.: oa o-owa [./] "to meet 
in the house": to deflower; v. 

[/%.]• ( 2 ) t0 affect : 

ue[*] a conjunction linking up 
nouns: "and"; Ozo o-Ods, ifa 
keyigblna n-owie [/•'/'..'] 
Ojo and Ode (they) were fighting 
this morning; we o-if-5gbay- 
ugbo [ V*'\] "you and he, did 
you (lit. "he") go to farm to- 



gether (gba)?" (Instead of this 
construction, wa o-o^e [ t * * ] ' 1 you 
(pi.) and he" is said to be more 
in use.) Cf. oe i [J]. 
oe 1 [J] an auxiliary verb used 
alone or in connection with 
another auxiliary verb, e.g. ke 2 
[']. It corresponds to the Eng- 
lish "again", "also", "as well", 
when standing between verbs; 
okeoepi w ee [.V'%] "and he is 
doing it as well"; Dkeoejni ee 
[/.•%] "and he did it as well". 
(Instead of ke, keyi [* '] and [ ' ], 
may precede it.) C/. oe [']. . 
vt 2 [J] to be scarce; igatf oe 
u-eoona [\\,J t ] gari (cassava) 
is scarce in this town; cf. 
uoeoe [ m \] m 
oekpa [/] (1) on account of; 
owing to ; used with a following 
noun or pronoun. (2) about (not 
in a local sense) ; iyare oekpa eoe 
n-uxaue ni [/. /. ;jJJ] " I shall 
come on account of that matter 
about which you have spoken". 
oe [ ' ] to become, be broad ; ode na 
ose [/.\] this road is broad. 
Idiom.: ato oe oe [./*] "eye is 
(or, was) broad with me " : I have 
been greedy; said e.g. when 
blaming oneself for having taken 
the best-looking share of a dish, 
only to find oneself deceived in 
it; cf. oe 1 [J], arooeoe 
©e x [J] to widen; if a oo-de na 
["..".] they are widening the 
road (oo is lengthened); cf. 

OE [*]. 

oe 2 [/] in oe [J] re ['] to bow. 

oie [ J ] to sleep ; dey-uoiete [\J ,] 
(I hope) you have slept (sell, 
well) ? A formula of salutation : 
uyuoi-ese o ['../"] may you 
sleep well ! (said to be the most 
correct and best form); also 

oi-ese o [./*]* anc * ( mos t used) 
uoi-Ese o [*%..*']. 

oieoie [/] (1) to warm up (water) ; 
oieoi-ame na me n-iyaxue 
[.../. './] warm this water for 
me so that I may have a bath ; 
(2) to be warm ; ooisoiee [ _ ^v] it is 
warm (water, the body) ; v. rS [J] 
(soup, weather), ti [J] (soup). 

00 1 [J] (to be) where (inter- 
rogative); we 00 where are 
you? ne (or le) 00 [ m J] where 
is it? fl* 00 [ t J] where is he? 

00 2 [J] to be ripe (with yellow 
colour, as bananas, pineapples, 
oranges, and pawpaws); alimoi 
na ooto this orange is 


0000 [/] (1) to hold oneself on 
somebody's back; "to back" 
(an infant) ; dooooo n-ugi-ayaxia 

"come and hold on 
to my back that you may let (us) 
be going": come on my back, 
and let's go ! (2) to carry on the 
back; oooo-ee [.."%] she carried 
it on her back. 

ooxo 1 [/] (1) to be flexible; 
oooxo [..*\] it is flexible. (2) to 
bend ; ehoho oox-erh£ ni [.'...' J] 
the wind is bending the tree ; v. 
gulee [.J. 

ooxo 2 [/] to praise pounded ize 
[\] as eooxo [."%,]; only used 
in a certain saying. 

ooxoooxo [ ] solid, starchy, as 

result of good pounding (fuf u) ; 
used with the verb ye [*]. 

03 [*] (1) to hop straight up with 
both legs; oooe he jumped; 
v. sSl [J], vl[']. (2) to pull out; 
e.g. a plant, with the hand ; v. zo 
[J] (with a pointed instru- 
ment); "out" is fua [ ] or hi 
f\] ; o-uhoro ni fua [ ' J ' J] pull 
that pawpaw-shrub out ! 


oorDooro [ ] describes tears 

running down over the face, 
and latex flowing out of the 
rubber tree ; used with the verb 
vie [*]; v. anyo ['.]. 

troeoue [ . J not solid ; powdery ; of 
fufu which is not well pounded; 
well pounded fufu sticks to- 
gether; ya duu-ema na yi? oye 
ouemiE [\'JJ'.\.] who has 
pounded this fufu? it is powdery. 

ouEtmetniE [_ J fat, of human 
beings; oye ousouetme [.*...] he 
is fat. 

uuoouo [/] (i) to bake yam or 
avocado pears by digging them 
into ashes. (2) to becpme, or be 
rotten (of meat, leaves, and 
corpses); oououuo [.,*%]• it is 
rotten; v. gbe 3 [']. 

6a [*] (1) our; Dy-u8a no ['."] it 
is ours. (2) us; omie oa [/'] he 
saw us. 

(5a [J] (1) to measure (length) ; (3a 
uta6-erha na [.. *•.] measure 
the length of this plank ! (3a w egbe 
[ *] "to measure body (one- 
seif ) ' ' : to be proud ; 3i3a w egbe gbe 
[,/••] he is very proud. (2) to 
weigh; va isawswe ni [,.'.JJ] 
weigh those groundnuts! cf. 

ioaegbe [...]. 

Cafla [ .'] (1) to arrange, e.g. yams, 
in piles; oaO-inya ni [..V] 
arrange those yams! (2) to 
f umble continuously with one's 
dress, looking whether it is 
in good order (considered as 
"proud"); yeyiSatfa o-eoa, n- 

ulare n-ayaxia ['.... Y/ # "] 
"don't look around yourself 
there any more (lit. 'that you') 
come that we may go!" cf. 

euaOa [ # Y]. 
ffe['] (1) my; owaCEno [./*] it is 

my house. (2) me; if a mis oe 
[*/•] they saw me. 
vz [J] to have; iog-gbore (egbe 
["]).[ Y] I have the same; lit. 
"'its body " (also gb-ore [••■]). 
(5E-rhl5 (erhiS [/]) [.'] to be 
eager, zealous. ve [J] iyo ["], 
6e [J] osa [/] to owe a debt 
(money); doe o-osa [...'] he 
owes me a debt; i(3-3c-osa [,./] 
I owe him a debt, v. re 1 [*], 
ru f] . o-5yae [J . ] to be warm 
(of water, food, the body); 
eoare na i5-5yae [./.«/.] this 
food is hot. n-£(i)i)£ ['J] 
"which has not" corresponds to 
the English "without"; n-e(i)(5- 
3fo [\Y "which has no end": 
eternal (Biblical e.g.) ; uwe ro-y- 

uf-Efe n-e(i)6-5fo ra [' J. V. Y] 
"do you think you have riches 

without end?" eoe [/J.] "it 

has not" followed by a nega- 
tive verb expresses necessity: 
"must"; efteJmayof^. 'Y "it 
has not (there is no chance) that 
I do not (lit. 'did not') go": 
I must go (v. the English 
"I cannot but. . ."); n-onwina w 

gt>-5mari w et>are [ Y V Y . Y 
"(he) who has worked must 

(also) eat". 

wa [J pers. pronoun, 2nd pers. pi., 
used in conjunction with a verb. 

wa 1 [/] (1) to spread; awa w ukp5 
y-oto [./.".] he spread a cloth on 
the ground. (2) to divide; 
iwa w e(3i [...Y I am dividing 
something (also : I am spreading 
something on the ground for 
sale). (3) to "revive" an exwae 
or Ebo by spitting on it (or rather 
"to awaken"). The sbos or 
charms are awakened in order to 
make them attend to com- 


plaints, for some of them " tra- 
vel", i.e. the spirits leave the 
shrine. The charm is "awaken- 
ed" by blowing chewed kola 
and "alligator-pepper" on it; 
owa^sbo [ # .JM he is reviving 
charms; owa w uxui3u [..'..] he is 
reviving "medicine". (4) to 
give food to witches; wa n-azE* 

[..'] gi ve to the witches! 
(e.g. before telling the future); 
cf. ewa 2 [ J , owaeoi [,..], owaise 


wa2[/] to castrate ; c/.owa 2 [..]. 
waya [/] to fall to pieces; to 

crumble; of bread, tobacco, e.g. 

but also of sandstone; also 

waya w a (i.e. rua) [."]', cf. 

wayawaya [...J. 
wayawaya crumbly; used 

with the verb ye [*]; cf. waya 

warha [.J describes a man with 
big buttocks sitting : otota warha 


w-arp [*.]; cf. wo [ ]. 

we [ * ] to order (something) ; 
w-eoi m£ u-ski [//J order me 
things from the market! iraw- 
eoi o-ebe [.'../] I am going to 
order things from the cata- 

we 1 [J] to open anything 
covered: a box, book, etc.; ow- 
Ekpeti na [J.).] he is opening 
this box. 

we 2 [/] to shout in applause; 
used with the onomatopoeic 
kpii[.];itawekpii ['./.] they 
are shouting in applause. 

w-egbe [.*]; cf. wo [']. 

weris [/] (1) to roll. (2) to turn, 
change, weri-egbe ["] to re- 
turn, weri-egbe [,./] ha [J] to 
repay, weri-unu [ . , /] to with- 
draw one's word. 


we [J] to say; owe he said; 
arowa oe we do [...V] my 
master says "do", i.e. greets you. 
wee [ b ] gently, gradually ; ode xia 
wee [/*.] he is falling gradually; 
Ehoho ne wee [//,] a gentle 

weewee [•*] describes stealthy 
walk, like that of a thief; oxia 
WEEWEE [.'••] he is walking 
WEiwEiwfii [ * * * ] describes a quick 
way of walking with short 
steps ; used with the verb xia [' ] . 
WEkEwskE [,J,J] (also weIeweIe) 
describes the walk of a duck 
e.g., but is also applied to a 
woman walking with swinging 

weIeweIe [ 1 describes a soft 

L. i • • • J 

and steady motion, as e.g. that 
of a waving flag or feather. 
wEwsrhfi [**•] shallow, of ponds, 
also of pots, plates, etc., but not 
of flowing water; oye wEWErhe 
[.'•••] it is shallow. 
wewewe [" # ] denoting whisper, 
secret talk ; ogua wewewe [ # J * * * ] 
he is talking secretly, 
wi [J] to get lost; opia t5e wip 

[ W.] m Y niatchet is lost, 
wia [J] to smell; owiare [./.] be 
is smelling it; owia re [ '}'] the 
smell is coming over here (lit. 
"it smells comes"), owia^ixa 
[,/*.] it smells bad. 
wie [J] to pull out yam (in order 
to store it); iwi-nyao-oto 
I pulled the yam out of the 
ground; cf. wio [/], yuo [/]. 
wio [J] ( r ) to faU out, e.g. quills, 
broom-sticks, fibres of a mat; 
igb-owEe na wio kua fo[/\ 
(igba) the bristles of this broom 
have fallen out entirely. (2) to 
take out (a quill). 

wo ["] to be strong, in w-aro 
[\] to be covetous, to snatch 
things from other people, w- 
egbe [/] to become, be strong; 
owegbe gbe [.'*•] he is very 

w<yyo [ *] to make noise, of a 
crowd of people, e.g. in a 
market; cf. owoxo ['/]. 

wohia [\] (i) to be strong. (2) 
to have powerful and effective 
charms; okpia na wohia gbe 
[,J,\"\ this man's charms are 
effective; cf wo [']; v. dido [ J. 

woo [J describes a fire burning 
with low flames ; oba woo [J ,] 
it burns with low flames. 

wowowo [...] describes fire, same 

as yitiyiti [....]• 
WD [J] to tire ; n-inwina wd 6-egbe 

"] this work is tiring me; 
egbe wo 6e [.'J') "body has 
tired me": I am tired. 

womuwDmu [.'.'] (also [....]) de- 
scribes voracious eating; used 
as a verb in a song. 

wDoro [ ] denoting tallness; oye 
wooro '[.'..] he is tall. 

wu ["] to die (mostly of a childless 
person) ; also applies to animals 
and plants as well as to break- 
able things with the exception 
of wooden things. Further, it 
may be used to denote an 
abandoned road. It is also used 
of the end of the masquerade 
dances, uyegbe na wu 
this mirror is broken (so as to 
be useless); ukpu na wu 
this cup is (completely) broken ; 
ode wu [ m '\] the road is aban- 
doned; sde n-ef it3i wu [ '] the 

day when the masquerade dances 

finish; v. fi ["]• 
wuo [J] (1) to rub oneself; to 
mark oneself with chalk ; iy-ude 

wuo [ / * J] I greased myself with 
palm oil (after a bath, to keep 
the skin smooth, especially 
during the time of harmattan). 
wu-orhue [/J to mark the 
shrine and temple of an ins [ t %] 
with chalk patterns, as done by 
the priests on every sd-ek§ [/•] 
and Ed-eke n-aka [.'.".]. (2) to 
make (scratch together) a yam 
heap; wu-eh-inya ni me [..' V] 
pile that yam heap for me! 

xa [J] to say; oxare w-if£ w (i)yo- 
nwa (we [J]; enwa "[."%]) 

not go just now; oxa-re 
or [ *•] he said it. xa [J] ma 
[J] to tell; v. ta [*] ma [/]; 
oxa ma i3£ w-it§ de [.'.'*. J] 
he told me that he was coming 
(the syllable ma is low, not a 
low-falling tone). xa w EOE [/J 
"to say a word": {a) to settle 
a palaver, cf. oxasOe [_]; (b) 
to curse (with the help of a 
charm); oy-exwae xa w £tSE n£ 

ne cursed him with an 
exwae [' ]; v. t-ihe [ # *\], rhi-ebo 

xa 1 [J] to sift corn (maize) when 
mixed with water; rhi-ahg re, 
n-ayaxa-ka na [,'\\JJ.] 
14 bring a sieve that we may take 
(it) to sift this corn" (-ka is oka 

[\]);v. bDOE[/]. 

xfi 2 [J] to tire (of food and work) ; 
ema xa oe [.,.'] "fufu is tiring 
me": I am beginning to get 
tired of fufu, when the speaker 
has been eating fufu for a long 
time, but v. huhu [/] which is 
used after a single rich meal; 

v. wd [J]. 
xarha [/] (1) to drop; xarha [/] 
kua ["] to drop off; alimoi 


ni xarha kua u-otuey-erha-fg 

L.V.7.V.] "those oranges 
were dropping off when he shook 
their (lit. 'its') tree". (2) to 
repeat ; cf. exarha [.%,-]. 

xerhe [••] small; used with the 
verb ye [']; cf xerhe [/]; v. 
(in descending order of size) tine 
[••], fwe? [•], rwey [•], vigy [•]. 

xerhe [/] to be small; cf. the pre- 
ceding item, and Yor. kere [.']. 

xe [J] to wait, followed by direct 
object: to await; dia xe(e) Ce 
y-ide [,.\J] "(stand and) wait 
for me for I am coming !"; ix- 
arhl^eso o-et5a [./\..\] I am 
waiting here for some people; 
ix-o(o)de [./] "Iam waiting on 
the road", e.g. as a guard 
during a secret performance; v. 
b-ods [/]. 

xl ["] to be, preceding a noun- 
predicate ; okpia w uxI [.J '] you 
are a man ! (as a word of praise 
for some work or e.g. success in 
wrestling). For the 3rd pers. sgl. 
no ['] is used. xl w ere [ tm \\ 
also xl [*] o-d r\] to be of 
concern to ; to have to do with ; 
iCE o-ixi w ere V.... M "I have 
not what I am to him": I have 
nothing to do with him ; ios o-ixl 
U ' D [^..."\] I have nothing to 

do with (lit. "in") it; cf. xl [>]. 
xl [J] to become; e.g. in the 
following greetings : oxI w ede hia 
[./* ' •] good bye ! lit. something 
like "it becomes all days, any 
day", viz. that we meet. 
oxI_owi£ good night! lit. 

' ' it becomes morning ' ' (the reply 
is uYuoi-Ese o ['...' ] may you 
sleep well o!) oxi-o-azekpse 

"see you later", lit. 
something like "it becomes what 
lasts a little" (in quick speech 6 


is heard instead of o). Further 
in xi-omae* [ ' ] to become old; 
c/.xi[*],xia [>], xig [J]. 

xia [*] (1) to walk (i.e. not with 
a definite aim) ; to take a stroll. 
(2) as second part of verbal 
combinations it means that the 
main action is stretching over a 
certain time; in combination 
with verbs of motion it can be 
translated by " along", e.g. 
ahiaOE tl xia [V'] the bird is 
flying along. This translation is 
also used in the local form of 
English when no verb of motion 
is concerned, e.g. "they are 
working along": if a nwina xia 
['./']. In combinations, it is 
only used in the ipf. mood of 
action. Redupl.: xiaxia [*'] to 
go about; v. rie [J], yo [*]. 

xia [J ] to hurt ; owe xia-^e [ t # J J 
(his) foot hurts him. 

xia 0] (1) to turn (into); x-Iko 
[J J to obstruct somebody's in- 
tentions ; xex-Ika lele 6s [ ' / ... *\] 
don't follow me in order to 
obstruct my affairs; used e.g. by 
a girl who is followed by her 
sister on a secret way to her 
lover, cf iko [*J. (2) to trans- 
form into something ; the trans- 
formation is done by the help 
of the Ebo Osu [/]; such 
"transformers" have no chil- 
dren. It is said to be possible 
to be transformed into any- 
thing, but the most difficult 
thing which is only achieved 
by a few adepts is to transform 
into a cow. At the death of a 
"transformer" some magic is 
expected to happen so that he 
will know when he is going to 
die. When he dies, a flash of 
light is said to go up from his 

Osu (shrine), i.e. the spirit of 
Osu has left the place. All 
transformers have the powers 
of witches, but they are not 
necessarily harmful like witches ; 
cf. xig [J]; v. fi egbe del-egbe 


xig ['] (i) to sell; t-ixi-ukpo na, 
uyadera [\J. .%.] Iamselling 
this cloth, can (or, will) you 
buy? by traders in the market, 
to passers by; n-oxi em kug 

[..../ ] " ne wno se ^ s things on 
credit*': a trader buying on 

credit and paying when he has 

sold his goods; creditor, v. de [*]. 

(2) to beat somebody in a game; 

v. axiooa [...]. 

xie [J] to mourn for; Dxi-otI w 3fg 

n-owu [...' V^V] ne is mourning 
for his dead "brother" (re- 
lative), xie-gbe ['] to mourn; 
to sit lonely and thinking of 
one's affliction; cf. axis [_], 
ixisegbe [...]. 

xig 1 [J] (1) to move like a snake ; 
enye xie yo xig re [.W '] the 
snake is moving here and there. 
(2) to twist (round) ; oxig 6-obo 

he twisted my hand 
(round); e.g. in order to bring 
me down on my knees. 

xig 2 [J] to wipe ; xie-fg [J t ] wipe 
it ! iy-ukp5 xi-egbe [.'...'] I took 
a cloth (towel) and rubbed 
myself, xie [J] hi [\| re [*] 
to wipe off ; xi-unwoite n-or-uhuo- 

gkpstl ni hi re [ ' # \^V] 

"wipe off the soup that is on 
(top of) that box!" (boxes are 
often used as tables) . 

xte-gbe [/]; cf. xie [J]. 

xigxigxig [•/] winding; e.g. of a 
rope; used with the verb ye [*] ; 
cf. xig 2 [J]. 

xio [) ] to break pieces of a kola- 

nut off with one's finger-nails; 
this is always done when saying 
prayers to one's ancestors or 
any zbo; after the prayer, those 
pieces which have been collected 
in the palm of the hand, are blown 
upon (not necessary) and then 
thrown on the shrine. 

x-iko [/.];</. xia[/]. 

xio [J] to block a passage, or 
channel; to cork a bottle; 
xio w urot-ame na [/.%./.] stop 
this gutter ! 

xirhixirhi [..,.] (1) rushing, of 
people only (Egh. Hist.) ; if a tule 
mu xia xirhixirhi [ * 1 they 

were rushing along ("ran along * 
rushingly"). (2) rapid, of speech ; 
used with the verb gua [J]', 
cf. Yor. kitikiti [ ]. 

xo [ ' ] to resemble ; ox-erha w e [ / " . ] 
he resembles his father; oko ni 

xo-tS us n-er-owa [. '-..'V] 
that fellow (oko is here a man 
known to the speaker as well as 
to the person spoken to) re- 
sembles my "brother" (relative) 
who is away (lit. " not at home ") . 

xd 1 [J] bad, i.e. useless; seems to 
be used with et3i [,W only, even 
when men are spoken of; v. d& 
[ ] which means "of bad cha- 
racter"; eoi xo ona xi [,./.'] 
this is a useless thing; eoi xo w 
uxl [...//] you are a naughty 
child, cf. the next item ; possibly 
eoi xo is only a short relative 
sentence with the verb xo(?) 

xo 2 [J] to be harsh, severe; 
uxd gbe [,J'] you are (always) 
severe, x-orhio [/] to be ugly 
(of people's appearance) (the 
in x-d is lengthened). 

x-orhi5 [/]; cf. xo 2 [J]. 

xd i [J] to wage war; of indi- 
viduals : to quarrel continuously, 


while ' ' to quarrel ' ' (occasionally) 
is gblna [/]; the town, etc. 
against which war is waged is 
the direct object of the verb. 
xo [J] mu_ofc> ["J to conquer 
(also metaphorically used) ; Oba- 
nosa xo w ute mu w oto ['.'.J"" .] 
Dbanosa conquered Ute (near 
Akure); ixo-fg mi-D^-oto [,J\.\] 
I have conquered it (some 
difficulty or hardship) (mis [ J] 
instead of mu ['] is only used 
with a pronoun following). 
x5 w Ihu [/J to be jealous; Osa* 
nobua n-Dx5 w Ihu me xi[ ' ' ' ] 
"I am a jealous God" (Akugbe). 

xo 2 [J] to be needed; iyo n- 
amoniD xoue o-eye ni [' ' J J] 
I needed (lent) money at that 
time; v. ho [J], 

xu [ * ] to drive (away) ; iterat . : xulo 
[/] to drive in different direc- 
tions, xu ['] kua ['] to drive 
out; oxul-ifa kua u-owa [..'...'] 
he drove them out of the 

xu w iwu ["J to hate (a word 
used by the older people) ; oxu w 
iwu 06 [....'] he hates me; v. 
mu^ohu [" J which is not so 
strong a term, but is used with 
the above meaning by young 

xua i (or xwa) [J] to pinch; oxua 
fte [ . /.] he is pinching me ; anwa 
xua o-obo [.V.*] "tongs have 
pinched my hand": I pinched 
my hand with the tongs. 

xua 2 [J] used as second part 
of a verbal combination, with 
si i [*] only. 

xuaa [J] to be heavy; agba na 
xuaa [.J, J] this stool is heavy. 

xue [J] to touch faintly; yexu-ere 
noyez-oCa xu don't 
touch it that it may not drive 


us; e.g. a sleeping snake; xu- 
e g be [ . ."] to shake, move a little, 
e.g. in sleep; v. tueye [*]. 
xu§ [*] to set a trap; ya xfi w 
ifi y-okpa n-Dr-ades-ods ni 
[ '•.. '. V] who has set a trap 
on the track that is in the 
middle of that road? 
xue [J] (1) to take a bath. 
(2) to wash (oneself, i.e. the 
whole body), in xue w egbe [ /] 
(but xue [J] gbe ['] means: "to 
wash oneself with a charm and 
kill (somebody)"); v. ho [J] 
(for things, and also the hair); 
kpe ['] (for parts of the body, 
e.g. hands, feet). (3) to swim; 
egua xue [J J J,] he cannot 

xue* [J] to cut the remnants of a 
farm-fire ; xue-oa na ese, rhudu- 
da-y-omato [.y\/./"\] cut 
this place properly because it is 
not burnt well! cf. exug 
xuenie [/.] to answer; xuen-iroro 
[ . . J . ] to answer without being 

xud [J] to strip off the grains 
from the maize stalk (with the 
fingers) ; also to strip leaves 
from the mid-ribs. 
xuooi[/] to be ill ; uxuooi ra [ \ "\ J 

are you ill? 
xurhu [ *] to become thick, to be 

thick, of soup, 
xuruxutuxutu ["..'] describes 
the walk of a cripple with his 
knees together, and his feet wide 
apart; used with the verb 
xia [*]. 

xwarha [ "] to thrash (somebody, 
with one's hands only); serves 
as iterative verb to kit3i [/]; 
ixwarha^e [,.\] I thrashed 
him, or, I gave him several 


xwaraxwara ["••] rough; like a 
rasp, or unplastered mud-walls, 
or the fish ekpalakpala [../"]; 
used with the verbs ye ['] or 
pi [•]; v. kpanokpano [...J. 

xwaxwa [/] to jostle one another 
(in a crowd) ; to be crowded; cf. 
uxwaxwaus [,"\]; v. keke [/]. 

xwaxwaaxwa ["•] strict; enya 
xwaxwaaxwa [.'"'] a strict 

x warns [/] (i) to be soft ; oxwsrhse 
[.."%] it is soft. (2) to soften, 
e.g. mud, fufu; oxwsrh-De [ ## \] 
he is softening it; also xwsrhe 
■ [."] (r) ua [ ] (both trans, andin- 
trans.); oxw£rh-or-ua [,,''J]he 

made it too soft, by adding 
too much water; cf. xwerhee 


xwsrhse [ ## ] (1) cool, not as cool 
as the degree indicated by 
rhio5 [*]; ofu re xwsrhes [.**..] 
it is cool. (2) gentle, mild (of 
character), also reduplicated, 
e.g. oua xwsrhexwsrhe ore o* 

kpia na xi [/ ' J//] lit. "a 

very mild man (it is) is this 

xwi [ * ] black ; ukpo ne xwi w ona xi 

[.."./] this is a black cloth; 

oCa ne xwi [./'] "black man": 

African; cf. xwixwi [/]. 
xwi L/] to lock (box or door); 

yaxwi w £kp£ti ni mz [J ' ,J\'] 

go and lock that box for me ! 
xwiexwiesxwis [ * * * ] undersized ; of 

human beings, animals, or corn ; 

used with the verb ye [*]; cf. 

d-ixwtexwieti [*./]. 
xwiiti ["] very black, apparently 

not as high a degree as duduudu 


xwixwi [/] to be black; ukpo na 
xwixwi this cloth is 

black; cf xwi [•]. ) 

BD 22 

ya 1 ['] (1) to take (in the 
meaning of "to use for a certain 
purpose"); oy-opia ru w ee [.7\] 
he did it with a matchet (lit. 
"took a matchet did it"; ya e 
tu w ee [7 \] "take (it) to do it T" 
opia n-aya nwina [ ..'. ] "a 
matchet which is taken (used) 
to work": a matchet for work- 
ing; ukeke n-aya gb-ebe [.*..*.'] 
"a stick that is used to write": 
"a writing-stick": a pen. (2) to 
last (a certain time); ogo na 
y-ede-ha, okewu [.'.*.'.**] this 
bottle lasted for three days 
before (lit. "and then") it 
broke. (3) to cause ; f-5ya w e 

s-unu [J V. 1 is he who 
caused it to happen" ; f-5ya Ce 
ru w se [J*'-\] "it is he who 
caused me to do it " ; see below : 
ya ['] nwina [/]; ya ['] re [']; 

v. also zs 1 [']. Combinations 
with verbs: ya ['] d-egbe (ds [']) 
[/] to substitute somebody for 
oneself as a pawn or as a victim 
for a sacrifice, ya ['] dido [/] 
to lead astray by showing the 
wrong way, or, by giving false 
information about something ; 
oya t5e dido u-en-eCe [/*...%.] 
he gave me false information 
in (or about) this affair (v. also 
gie [J] ma [J], bibi [/], gu 

[•] dido [.•], gup nn dsn). 

ya ['] fi oha [_'] to proclaim a 
woman or possibly an article as 
a present to the Dba; this is 
mainly done when two people 
quarrel about something, and 
the weaker party sees that he 
cannot keep (or obtain) it in any 
case; but also when something 
"causes trouble" to its owner; it 
is also done e.g. by a father 
whose daughter is troublesome ; 


the Oba does not refuse a 
present. (This action may also 
be taken in a similar way by 
giving something as a present 
to a "big" man.) oy-en-oxuo fi 
oha gi-oba (gie [']) [/\./"'] 
lit. "he took the woman (and) 
announced (her) as present to 
the Dba". ya gbe [/] (imperat. 
of ya [ ' ] gbe [ * ]) cry of encourag- 
ment for a wrestler : ' ' knock him 
down I" or " throw him down ! " 
(when the opponent is lifted 
from the ground) (Pidgin Is go 
[ - \ ] : let go 1) ; v. gbatay ada [....]. 
ya ['] hi^egbe [..'] to cover 
oneself with something; rhi- 
ukpo ni n-uya hi egbe [..J J'..,'] 
take that cloth to cover your- 
self with! ya ['] ma [J] to 
forgive; iya^e ma fus I.' J.J] 
I forgave it you. ya [*] m-egie 
['J (ma [']) to appoint some- 
body to a title, ya ['] na 
['] to present somebody with 
something ("to dash"); y-ei5i 
me [/'] give me something 
("dash me"), ya ['] nwina 
['] to make somebody work, 
ya ['] re ['] to bring about (A. 
Biogr.). ya ['] ta ['] re [J to 
repeat in one's second life an ill- 
ness from which one has suffered 
during the preceding life ; this is 
prevented by removing the 
presumed cause of the disease out 
of the body, e.g. in the case of 
a "cough" (consumption?), by 
removing a "bag containing a 
white milky substance" out 
from the abdomen; v. also 
eve [.J. ya [*] we [*] to allot 
something to- somebody; iy- 
eoafe n-uarhirhimis u-eoa hia 
w-ue L\J'\;'J] "I have 
taken food whichever you may 

find there all (i.e. the food) 
allotted to you"; I declare all 
the food you may find there to 
be yours, ya ['] yi ['] to be- 
lieve; iy-eo-uxate yi [..'J/'] 
I believe what you have said; 
a w iy-eo-uxate yi [, ) \] what 
you have said cannot be be- 
lieved; oy-ude t3s yi [//'] he 
took my advice; cf. iyayi [/']; 
v. omobe [/J. ya ["] y-eto['.] 
to hope ("to put hope"). ya[*] 
yi [ " ] obo [ / ] to put a certain 
affair into somebody's hand, 
e.g. the revenge for an offence ; 
oy-so-Dfe y-oi5-obo [.V../] he 
put his affair into my hand, i.e. 
he begged me to take it up. 
ya ['] y-omo [.'] to adopt as 
child; oya w e y-omo [."//] he 
adopted him. Combinations 
with nouns: y-egbe [/] ko ['] 
to put oneself under the pro- 
tection of somebody; y-eyo [*J 
to give something (after a 
prayer) to a priest in order that 
he may give it to the god later 
on (also mi-eyo [.'.], from mie 

UDiv- tun- y-«to[;]p[V] 

to do something with cunning, 
ya ['] ero [/] {a) to provide 
lodging for somebody; y-okpia 
na w ero [././] give this man 
lodging I (b) to provide food for 
somebody, (c) (idiom., mostly 
used by old people) to throw 
away; y-st-ero throw it 

away! ya ["] ike [..] to sup- 
port somebody; oy-osi w o|;-ike 
u-en-Ezo [/./.."] he supported 
his friend* in the lawsuit (also 

rhi-yobo na [/./]). y a ["] 
obo [/] to help a man; oy-erha 
o-obo* [ # \/] he helped my 
father, y-obo [/] tie [J] to 
beckon to somebody; iy-obo 


ti-£re [.**.".] I beckoned to him. 
y-obo [/] y-oto [\] to come 
about; to commence (in trans., 
of a thing, or affair) ; o-oya y-obo 
y-oto hs ["%.."•.,/] how did it 
come about? y-obo [/] y-o 

V\] (yi 1 [']) to agree to it 
(the second verb, yi, may be 
followed by nouns as well (v. 
kwe ['] y-o [\\); iy-obo y-o 
[ ' • -v] I agree (to it) . y-ows 
[\] rilo [/] to tread (lit. "with 
feet"); idiom.: uy-ows ril-oo£ 

[.'... ] " vou have trodden on 
me": you have committed 
adultery with my wife, y-oyo 
[',] na [*] to honour; to pay 
respect to; y-oyo n-en-odie fue 
[\.V J] P a Y respect to your 

r senior! oy-oyo me [..J'] he 
(always) pays respect to me. 
y-omo [/] na ['] to betroth 
("dash") a girl to somebody 
(i.e. generally as a child, when 
the suitor has asked for her); 
after the betrothal, the suitor 
starts the ugaoe [."Y], the 
service for his father-in-law; 
v. also mu [*] xus [J*]; oy-omo 
ne [.'•>] he betrothed a girl to 
him. y-unu [/] y-o to 
demand a price for something 
(of the seller) ; il-iyo w uy-unu y-o 
[ • • ] how much (money) do 
you want for it? (v. ve ['].) 

ya 2 [ ' ] an auxiliary verb used in 
relative sentences when the 
relation is a temporal one: 
"when"; d-sys n-oya re [.."'] 

or [./V] " at what time (was 
it) when he came? " : when did he 
come? cf. ya i ['](?); v. na 4 [*]. 
ya 3 [*] to join, in ya ['] ba [J] 
to join, ya [*] gba ["] to stick 
together; to become knotted; 
e.g. of a rope into which some- 

body has made a loose knot that 
has become tight : iri na ya gba 
[ '/•] this rope has become 
knotted, ya ['] ku ['] gbe ["] to 
agree with one another ; ma o-ore 
ya ku gbe [/'•••] we agree 

ya [J], ['] a verb implying the 
idea "to go", but only used 
with a main verb following it; 
corresponds to do 1 [J] " tocome 
and..."; oyaru w £e he 
goes to do it; [.""%] ne went 
and did it. 

ye [ ' ] to be : (1) indicating quality ; 
oy-erio [.V] it is so; oye 

sogwosogwo [/ ] it is tender 

(of a child). "(2) to be in a 
certain place (but only in 
relative clauses; otherwise v. 
re 1 [*]); owa n-oye [../] the 
house where he lives. 

ye 1 [J] re ['] to remember; 
imayiy-eCE na ["'.J.] I cannot 
remember this word; iy-sre re 
I am remembering him; 
cf. ayere [..J. 

ye 2 [J] an auxihary conferring the 
idea that the action of the main 
verb is still or again done ; eoi n- 
akaru yi ayeru w se [.../". 
what has been done before, is 
still being done; oyer-eua [,J'\] 
he is still there; oyeweri-egbe 
re [/%...'*] he has come back 

y-erhs ['.]; cf. yo [']. 

y£ [J] to please; oy£ t5e [,/] it 
pleases me. 

y£gb£y£gb£ [ ] describes the 

tired walk of very fat people, 
esp. women (and among the 
animals, of fat cows); oxia 
y£gb£y£gb£ [/....] she is moving 
wearily (because of her stout- 
ness) . 



yskuyeku [ ] big; fat; of rats 

or pigs; also describing the walk 
of such animals; of§ na xia 

yskuyeku [// ] this rat is 

walking clumsily (because of 
its being fat); v. sbete [**.]. 

ysye [ *] to be foolish; v. kiza 


yi i [ ] a verb indicating the 
direction in which an action is 
performed; something like "to 
put into", "to put in a certain 
place"; or simply "into", "in"; 
eke n-irhi-Efe yi [..'"'•] the 
place where I put it; irhi-Efe 
y-eoa [./\\] I put it there. 
y- D r\] " m ^", e.g. okegbma 
wu y-o [/.,.."%] "he fought and 
died in it": he died while 
fighting (Egh. Hist.), y-ihe [\] 
"into the place": instead; 

irhi-ona y-ih-oy-uus n-owifi 
[.. .. ..V.] I take this instead 

of mine which is lost, 
yi 2 ['] to create; Osa yi agbo 

LJ'\] it was God ( or Osa) who 
created the world; uyitte n-osa 
yi w o oy-igbogieno [,\ J' )"..'] 
" the creation (as) which Osa has 
created you, was one of a joke", 
said e.g. when somebody has 
done a very stupid thing. 
yi w ama ["J (a) to make a mark 
(indicating ownership e.g.); (b) 
to wound, y-uhi [' ] to make 
a law, or rule. 

yi 3 ['] in yi [*] sto ['.] to 
watch; to observe; oy-££-£to 
[/'.] he observed him; ama n- 
oya y-Efsr-ona xi [77..] 
"this is the mark he has used 
to watch it" (e.g. a piece of his 
property, lest it be stolen) . 

yi 4 ['] a particle often used at 
the end of questions (but not ne- 
cessarily), meaning possibly "be 

fore"; ukaru^se yi [7'\~\] nave 
you done it before? v. ta [.]. 

yiysrs [•••] describes the fall of a 
small fruit (e.g. avocado pears) 
and big leaves (for bigger fruit, 
v. kpu [J); ode yiyete [/••'] it 
fell, of a small fruit; v. boes [J. 

yiyi(yi) [ t# J describes the con- 
tinuous flow of a liquid; v. 
vis ["]. 

yo i ['] (i) to go to a certain 
place; in the imperf. it expresses 
habitual action only; progres- 
sing action is expressed by rie 

[J]; uy-eskur(u) ra [..*%.] do 
you go to school? e, iyo ["/] yes, 
I go (i.e. usually); iy-eoa [.%], 
iy-se (lit. "it") [/j/] I went 

there; iyo I am not going 

(as a refusal; viz. on an errand, 
etc.); (but: irie [./.%] I am not 

going away), yo and re when 
added to a verb of motion 
express the idea of "to and 
fro", e.g. oxia yo xia re [.""] 
he is walking to and fro. 

yo 2 ['] tall, not of human beings; 
erha nayo [."."%] this tree is high. 

yo ["] in y-erhs [*J to set fire (to 
farmland only; "to make fire 
in kitchen or sleeping-place" is 
kok-erhs [.'.]); mu egbe n-ayay- 
erhe "get ready that 

we may go and set fire to the 

yo [J] to fill gaps in a crop by a 
second sowing. 

yo [YI; of. yi i [•]. 

yokoo [*•] big and fat; of birds, 
mostly fowls, and also of insects 
as e.g. mosquitos when full of 
blood; oye yokoo [/"] it is big 
and fat; cf. yokoyoko [ ]. 

yokoyoko [ ] describes the 
clumsy movement of very fat 
fowls ; cf. yokoo ["]. 


yoDD [J describes a noise as of 
distant rainfall in the forest, or 
of a distant waterfall^or rushing 
river; in the Benin Area only 
the Oxuo [ m W river rushes like 

yoyoyo [ >t J describes long falling 
hair, or a beard; cf. iyoyo [...], 
DtDmiyoyo [*/..]. 

yu° [J] (i) to pull out. (2) to 
drop out; oyuo fua it is 

dropping out; cf. wie [/]; wio 


za [/] to speak ill of a man 
without just cause; to slander 
(the noun is oza [ ]) ; cf. zaza. 

zaya [/] (1) to scatter, also: zaya 
[/] (t)ua [']; zay-uherhs ni^ua 
[ . ' V * /] scatter this firewood ! 
(if the fire is not yet wanted). 
zay-iyo w a [.*'*] (rua) to squander 
money. (2) to be scattered; 
a curse: t-urazaya-a (rua [*]) 
[**..'] "mayyou be scattered !" 
i.e. all your belongings, etc.; 
cf. the next item. 

zayazaya [ ] describes the act 

of tearing something to pieces, 
and also women tearing each 
other's hair; cf. zaya [ '], zaza. 

zaizai [_] describes a brisk and 
hurried kind of walk, like that 
of a man who does not want to 
waste time and e.g. talks to 
others while hurrying along; 
used with the verb xia, [ * ] . 

zama [/] to respect; izam-ooa 
hiehie L/."Y-A] I don't care 
for anybody; cf. Uzama [/.](?). 

z - a t<> T .]; Cf. Z£ 2 [']. 

zaza [/] to scatter the contents 
of a box, etc., also to tear each 
other's hair, of fighting women; 

Xszaza o-ukpo ['..'.] don't scat- 
termy clothes ! ozaza-t-eto [..'.'] 
she tore her hair; cf. zayazaya 

L...L za [)}> zaya [/]. 

ze ['] (1) to be hard, stiff. (2) to 
be strong, powerful; ze o-udu 
[/.] "to be strong at the 
heart": (a) to be courageous, 
v. di ['] "to be bold", (b) to be 
obstinate; cf. izeoudu [ ]. 

z-edu [/]; cf. zs 4 [']. 

zeyezeye [ — ] very lean and 
weak, as a man recently re- 
covered from illness; used with 
the verb ye [']; v. nyiys [/]. 

zs i ['] (1) to choose; to select; 
sbo z-o [. ,"\] "is an ebo choosing 
you?" viz. as priest; said if 
somebody suddenly becomes 
excited and moves like someone 
drunk or mad, such as people 
do when entered by a spirit; 
(also z-sbo [*J) ;iYa-re ne, e£- 
inaz-Dy-oe ne [,/'-, I 
shared it (already), and then 
I selected his own (share) and 
gave (it) him. (2) to take out; 
iraz-ema o-odo [.'.. "] I am 
going to take fufu out of the 
mortar; iraz-ema y-okpa (yi [']) 
[/"/"] I am going to put fufu 
on a wooden plate ("take fufu 
out and put on"); or iray-okpa 
z-ema (ya [']) [/"•.] I am going 
to take a wooden plate to put 
fufu (sc. "on"), i.e. out of the 
mortar. (3) to cause (v. ya 1 [ ' ]), 
used with following iye [\] or a 
construction with -na-; f-5zs- 
y-os-unu it is he who 

caused that it happened; v. also 
(e)o- 3. Combined with verbs: 
ze ['] ba [ ) ] to take more of a 
certain thing than accorded or 
allowed ; oze ba w isaw£we n-iya ne 
[ ' * \] he has taken more of 

l- • •••• T J 


the groundnut than what I 
allowed (lit. "took gave") him 
(the ba is low here, not falling) ; 
v. ze ['] yi [*]. ze ['] hi [\] to 
take (a certain amount) away 
from something (e.g. grains, or 
gari); oze hi-gap ni [.".*/] 
(look) he is taking out of that 
gari! ze ["] kua ['] to take 
something out and throw it 
away ; oxoxo z-ize n-of ua na kua 

['.'.'' .J] "t ne f° w l t0 °k these 
crawfish and threw them away" : 

i.e. scratched some away and 
made them thereby useless, 
ze [*] lele [/] "to choose (and) 
follow": to be next of kin, or 
in rank, to somebody; m-o|;- 
en-oze lel-en-uxa ni [..'... J J] 
lit. "it is I who chooses 
follows that (one) whom you 
are (or, were) speaking of": 
I am next to the man you 
were speaking of. ze ['] ta ['] 
"to guess say": to spread 
rumours; cf. ozeta [./]. ze ['] 
yi ['] same as ze ['] ba [J], 
ze ['] y-o [\\ (a) same as ze ['] 
ba [ J], but y-o [%] implies an 
object which has already been 
mentioned: "to take more of 
it." (b) to take heed of some- 
thing; also in oze y-oo-eue 
[//J he is minding my word. 
Combined with nouns: z-abo 
[/] to do something quickly, v. 
also giegie [J'"], z-abo yaxia 
n-urherhere [/*'•..'] "go quick- 
ly that you may come in time ! " 

z-abo u u w £e [. *'\] do it quickly! 
Idiom.: z-ak-iha [/J lit. "to 
bring out the tooth in the wrong 
direction": to be irritated, of 
otherwise peaceful people, e.g. 
by mockery; also of animals 
when attacked or wounded ; the 

more ordinary expression is 
ohu m-obo muj [..."%]" anger 
seizes him strongly", z-axowa 
[\J to choose as substitute, 
z-aze [\] to pay a fee to a 
"doctor" or somebody who has 
taken care of a man; z-en-aze 
[.^.1 pay the fee! z-ebaya[ 
to be out of control ; to be res- 
tive ; esi na z-ebaya [**.."%.] this 
horse is troublesome, uncon- 
trollable; oko na z-ebaya 
L\.V] the- canoe is out of 
control (e.g. in a strong current) . 
eki z-ebaya [...%.] there is a 
slump in the market ; z-en-unu 
[/•] to state one's case (in the 
Bini with a following possessive 
pronoun; this combination be- 
longs perhaps to ze 4) also gwi w 
en-unu w efe [.//J; ze ['] unu 
[/] in the idiom : omo z-o^-unu 
[."•/] "the child chose his 
mouth" : he (or she) had a child 
several times, but it always died 
(''never stayed"), z-eto [/] to 
shave (hair); laho, doz-ou-eto 
[.V.. ] please, come and shave 
my hair! (gb-eto [/] is "to cut 
hair with scissors ") z-egbele [ t / ] 
to commit suicide by hanging 
oneself, z-eti [/] to oppose; to 
contradict; oz-oO-eti [//] he 
opposed me. z-etu [' J to shave 
(beard), z-idase [/'] to play 
naughty tricks, of boys; oz- 
idase gbe [.*"•] he is naughty, 
z-iduna [.%.] "to play magic 
tricks", i.e. to vanish, or to 
transform things (but "to trans- 
form oneself" is xia [J]); it is 
also used of conjuring tricks, as 
e.g. in oz-iduna y-oka x-inya 
L.\Z'\'] he is playing tricks, 
turning corn into yam (xia. [/]). 
z-igie ['.] to select the best (used 

by old people); u-u-az-igie ba, 
z-okpa (or rhi-okpa [/J) o-d 

"what are you 
picking (for the best) for, take 
one among them!" z-igws [\] 
to give presents, of a wife to 
her husband, or of a man to 
his superior chief, v. hi w oha [_'], 
imuoha [ ## J. z-iyo ["] {a) to 
cut teeth, of a small child; 
(b) to pay money, as a fine, or 
when blackmailed; but v. ha 2 
[^] (for a debt); oz-iyo y- 
amioCaite [ / * m * \ . ] he payed 
money for adultery, zs ['] 
iyo ["] to fine (or blackmail) 
somebody; iz-of-iyo [."**] I fined 

him. z-ihi to blow one ' s 

nose, z-obo [/] lit. ''to take 
out hand": to give up; to 
cease; oz-obo o-inwina [ * ' ] he 
has ceased working; oz-o^-obo 
[//] he gave it up. Idiom.: z- 
ukp5 w obo ['_'] lit. ''to give up 
(wearing a) cloth": to die 
(v. Oxwahs song 7). z-ogis [/] 
"to take out laughter": (a) to 
joke; (b) to cause laughter; to 
be ridiculous ; amaru egbe z-ogis 
[*\.WI "one does not do each 
other to cause laughter": the 
things you do to each other are 
no matter for laughing. Idiom. : 
az-ogie z-soata [,.\"V] as a 
matter of fact: lit. "we joke and 
say the truth" which means 
perhaps " though it seems a joke 
it is true". The more modern 
expression is o-od-soata [.'\J 
lit. "on the road of truth", 
z-okeke [/J to make false 
excuses; uya yi-y-Ozo z-okeke 
t a [."...J do you believe that 
O j o makes false excuses ? z-oko 
[\] to pay a fine (but not in 
money) ; cf. oko [. J. z-otu ['J 

to divide up in working gangs; 
waz-otu n-uwa rherheru w se 

"divide yourselves 
in gangs that you may do it in 
time ! ' * z-ows [ ' . ] to step, z-oka 
[/] to shout (at somebody); to 
speak harshly; oz-oka da (3s (da 

[J]) [..'.*] ne is (always) shout- 
ing at me (but "to shout to 
somebody" is da ['] tie [/]). 
z-orho [\] to purify oneself from 
being a widow, z-oxi-aro [.'.J 
lit. "to have a strong eye(?)": 
to make a pretence of strength 
or power, in order to obtain 
something, z-unu [/] "to choose 
mouth" : to be squeamish about 
one's food, cf. izunu [ ## J. z-uwu 
[/] " to choose death " : to com- 
mit suicide, v. z-sgbsle [ /]. (3) 
to send; iz-ot3a bu w sre [.'\.'J 
I sent a man to meet him. 

zs 2 [ ' ] to be proud (in a good sense) . - 
z-aro [ ' J to be severe ; iz-aro mu w 
s, okeyaxia [.*. I was se- 
vere with him, and then he went. 

zs 3 ['] an auxiliary verb in- 
dicating that the main action 
is performed or has been per- 
formed for some time, zs ['] 
kpse [J] (to be) soon; iyas-odo 
u-azekpse [,\.J.J] I shall 
arrive there soon; lit. "when it 
has lasted some time". 

zs 4 ['] to speak a certain 
language; oz-sdo [_*] he speaks 
Bini (or [ "*] e.g. when hearing 
a foreigner suddenly speaking 
Bini) ; oz-uhobo [ t _ ] he speaks 
Sobo. z-edu [/] to interpret; 
edu n-ozs ma gbe the 
interpretation (which he per- 
forms) is very good. 

zs oe [**] as; according to; 
maru^se zs o-en-uxare [ , 'J ' • . J t ] 
we did it as you said ; cf. zss [ * ] . 

zsbi [/] to be guilty; ozebi [/•] 
he is guilty; cf. Yor. jebi [/]. 

zee [*] (i) exactly; erio ye zee 
[/ • •] it is exactly so. (2) quietly ; 
intensifies se ['] tae [J] "to 
leave alone " ; s-o(e) rae zee u-en- 
ixe tu£ na ["V ] lit. "leave 
him alone as I am looking at 
you now", i.e. something like: 
can't you see that I am angry? 
leave him alone ! cf. ze oe [ ' * ] . 

zzyezzye [....] loose ; shaking, e.g. 
of a tooth, or rafters in the roof- 
construction of a house; used 
with the verb ru [ ' ] ; oru zexeze^e 
[.",...] it shakes. 

zezeze [_J trembhng; violent, 
esp. with fear; stronger than 
that described by hiyahiya 

[ ]; zezeze is mostly used 

with the verb gwo ["]. 

zl [J] to bear; to endure; also 
zi w egbe [ . / ] ; Dzi w egb-£re [/'/.] 
he endured it. 

zi£ [J] (1) to get hold of some- 
thing to which one is not en- 
titled, but with the intention 
of using it exclusively ("by 
force"). (2) to stamp the 
ground, or to beat the soil 
with a stick round a pole newly 
rammed-in in order to fix it. zl- 
aro [.'.] yi ["] to look carefully 
at (something) ; to scrutinize. 

zi£zi£ [/] to force into; oziEzi- 
ukpo "y-uwste [. . . . J V. ] he is 
forcing the cloth into it (e.g. 
a box); cf. zie [J]. 

ziga [/ ] to try; v. hia 2 [J] ; oziga 
ru w £e [./*\] he tried to do it; 
cf. zigala 2 [."]. 

zigala 1 [."] to fly, of butterflies; 
very idiomatic, used only by old 
people (the existence of this 
word was doubted by A.); cf. 
ziga [.']. 

zigala 2 [/*] to try hard; b 
strive, same as hia 2 [J] ; occur 
in a certain song; cf. ziga [/]. 

ziyarakpaziyarakpa [ ] de 

scribes the walk of a mxi 
suffering from rheumatism, luin 
bago, or any complaint con 
cerning the hips, i.e. a sort 
walk with the legs a little apar 
and a careful movement of th 
hips; used with the verb xia ['" 

zixirhi to be firm, solid; eg 
of trees. 

ZD 1 [J] (1) to germinate; t< 
shoot up; ei3i w okD na zdj;-£S£s 
J.J.''] this seed has com. 
up well. (2) to pick out, wit] 
a pointed instrument, or wit] 
the finger-nail (also zo [ ) ] fu; 
[']); zD w ako [/J to pick one' 
teeth, with a pin, or the quill o 
a broom. Iterat. zdId [ '] ku« 
['] to pull or pick many thing 
out of a heap, or out of a mas 
of things which are pasted to 
gether, by means of something 
pointed, e.g. one's finger-nail 
but v. yuo [J] "to get hole 
of part of a plant and pul 
it out"; zol-en-DgbEhu kui 
v-oka ni [.,"'' J'] pick the 
useless (scil. ears, or grains 
ones out of that corn! (fiu 
cannot be used with zob.) 

zd 2 [J] in zo w ese (or z£ w ese 
[.'.] to perform a sacrifb 
ordered by an oracle or an] 
prediction in order to " pacify ' 
for some offence, especialb 
adultery (by the husband of th! 
guilty wife); ese n-azD [.../ 
performing the ' ' pacificatioi 
sacrifice". The powers to bi 
pacified are Erha ['*], Osu [ ] 
and Ogu [/]; but Dfomila [/'. 
priests pacify their wives' adul 



tery besides at the shrines of 
Ofomila [/.J, Esu [..] and 
Ork>ls ["J. If the husband has 
no Erha ["] himself, i.e. if he is 
a junior son, his eldest brother 
must perform the ese [ # J . In 
case the senior brother dislikes 
his junior brother or the culprit 
woman, he sends for the 
oka w £gb£e [,"\], the head of 
the sib who will insist on all 
the amount paid by the para- 
mour (or damages) being used 
for the sacrifice as well as the 
money received by the woman 
(as a present) ; then the husband 
cannot keep any of the money 
paid to him by the paramour 
as he would otherwise do, esp. 
as the oka w £gbse comes ac- 
companied by other elders of the 
sib, and must be entertained. 

zua [J] to watch a man eating, in 
the hope of obtaining food (or 
usually some more food) by 
this silent appeal; cf. uzuaos 


z-uyu [ ] to trouble (of stomach 
only); sko z-uyu os [.%.,'] 
" stomach is troubling me": 
I have indigestion; cf. t-uyu [/], 
1-uyu [.']. 

zupzuro [ ] describes the walk 

of a man, as it were, afraid of 
hitting against something though 
there is nothing to be afraid of, 
of "people not bright in move- 
ment"; possibly "slouching" 
is the nearest adequate term; 
used with the verb xia [']. 

zuzuzu [ <# J describes a smell like 
that of a dead animal; used with 
the verb wia [/]; v. huhuhu 


Cambridge: printed by r. i. severs